What are we up to?
With a lot of changes going around like re-emerging from the pandemic, re-opening, and moving in of big businesses in the area, there’s bound to be changed in the local real estate market.
What’s new nowadays?
We gathered a few top real estate-related topics that you might have some two cents about.
So we talk about what some local magazines or newspapers have to say, what’s making the locals buzz on social media, and what new things are popping in the neighborhood.
If you’re a resident in Northern Virginia, you might even experience some of these or if you haven’t yet, well here’s some recent news for you.
Let’s start with the first article:
#1: What the AlexandriaLiving Magazine has to say
The AlexandriaLiving Magazine states that the median home prices will keep increasing at a lower pace.
This research was also backed up by the Center for Regional Analysis and the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors.
It stated that single-family homes in Arlington are forecast to increase an average of 16.4% year over year, while Fairfax County is going to be 8.6% and 7.4%, in Alexandria or the city of Alexandria.
The article also states that there is a dip in the market – from 2000 plus active listings down to 400 in December.
However, that comparison data was made between June (2000) to December (400) – June being the peak time of the market. There tend to be fewer listings in December or in the winter season.
If you are planning to find homes, the winter months can also be a good time to scout and get the best deal as there are fewer buyers looking for properties.
You can read more about the price drop here.
#2: Northern Virginia is becoming more diverse
Have you noticed a few changes in recent years?
Based on the Washington Business Journal article, the Greater Washington area has seen a 13% population increase since 2010 – about 700,000 new residents in Northern Virginia, with Loudoun County seeing a bigger increase than Fairfax County.
Fairfax County grew about 6.3% in the last decade, making it the majority non-white suburb, with its white population declining from 64% to 47% since 1990.
Most residents who are seeking to relocate within Northern Virginia tend to ask about how diverse the community, school, and neighborhoods are.
And with the rise of big businesses coming in the area and attracting new residents, there’s bound to be a continual growth happening.
One thing you might have also noticed is that income plays a large role in diversity.
Fairfax County is largely divided by its region’s income. The higher the income the region makes, the less diversity there is.
This goes for high-rated schools as well.
Based on research, schools with high ratings tend to have less diversity, sparking a concern from the community.
If you want to read more about the rise of population and diversity in Northern Virginia, you can head over to this article.
#3: Car Tax Bill Increase
Have you gotten your car tax bill lately? Have you noticed something off?
If you’re someone who tracks their dues, you might have noticed an increase in your car tax bill.
If you haven’t checked your bill yet, there may be an additional $25 increase from your usual bill.
Most residents who drive used cars in Fairfax County have noticed their car bill has increased – catching most of them off guard.
According to the county government, the increase affects about 12% of Fairfax County homeowners.
Northern Virginia is currently facing an increase in the car tax bills after the increased value of used cars.
Now, the increase is not from the local government increasing taxes on these cars, but instead because of the value.
Because of the pandemic, there have been supplying chain issues with the microchips that go into new vehicles, which means people tend to lean towards purchasing used vehicles instead.
There’s also been a decrease in the supply of used vehicles as many people who have purchased new vehicles don’t trade in their used ones.
However, if you want to file a dispute for this, you can head to…
Remember that to file for a dispute, it must be for a valid hardship otherwise, you would need to pay the bill.
You can find out more about the car tax bill increase here.
#4: Co-Living Spaces in Alexandria
Alexandria is experiencing a lot of co-living spaces in the area popping up recently.
Similar to AirBNBs, companies and even individual owners rent out bedrooms instead of the whole house. Renters then have access to common areas like the kitchen and even the living room.
This type of renting is also commonly called Single Occupancy Rooms or SROs and it’s becoming more of a trend in the city of Alexandria.
However, a lot of people are seeing this as a concern in terms of the property value of the area, as well as the safety and cleanliness of the neighborhoods.
Most people who avail SROs may have just moved in the neighborhood but have low-income work or they could be young professionals that are just starting or are taking advantage of the living area – commute, good neighborhood, etc.
Some companies are even advertising SROs as an affordable housing initiative to draw interested workers in.
There are few of these SRO-type living situations popping around the country like in Atlanta and California called PadSplit and HubHaus, respectively. It has had little success as PadSplit is facing some lawsuits while the latter has stopped operations.
The city council of Atlanta has an incoming meeting on September 5th for the rising concerns of these board-type houses.
Check out more of the article here.
#5: Oak Mites
Something that you might not be expecting to hear is the rise of the Oak Mites.
Arlington residents rush to Facebook trying to figure out what is causing the red, itchy marks only to find out that there is an entire thread run by people who have experienced the very same thing.
A few months ago, there was a report of a cicada infestation in the Arlington area. This means non-stop buzzing for weeks on end.
It was only in early July when they disappeared. However, something new was taking over.
As it turns out, after the cicadas laid their eggs and left, Oak mites have taken over as their diet includes cicada larvae.
A visit to the doctor will tell you that those bites remain a mystery as there hasn’t been any research done or any solid evidence that the bites come from Oak mites.
But most neighborhoods, social media platforms, and even the local parks are encouraging everyone to stay clear of trees and trails as these are areas where you’re likely to get bitten.
If you live in the area or are planning a visit, there are a few precautions that you can take:
- Using effective bug repellant
- Putting screens on doors and windows
- Be vigilant when mosquitoes are most active
- Wear protective clothing (long sleeves, pants, and socks) while outdoors
- Drain stagnant water to prevent mosquitoes from breeding
It was also recommended that after a trail or hike, to take a shower and remove used clothes immediately as Oak Mites tend to bite hours after being in an area where there are Oak Mites.
Want to read more about Oak Mites? Check out this article.
#6: Amazon HQ2
Amazon has recently moved into the neighborhood and has begun drawing people from all over.
Amazon’s current project will be developing outside of the region however, because they’ve only hired up to 1500 people, it may be put off until the pandemic has passed.
Until then, the ongoing development project may come into completion before Amazon starts another project.
JBG Smith, one of the largest developers in the area, had an article in the Washington Business Journal stating that they are looking into developing the National Landing Area, which is a name branded by local officials.
The National Landing Area or the Amazon HQ2, itself, is currently being turned into a hub where workers and even residents near the area can stay in a loop where you can live and play.
To make that happen, developers are currently in full force trying to make what is called an “18-hour neighborhood” according to the Washington Post.
The main goal is to keep you in one place where you can work and go about your everyday life in a centralized location.
In fact, just a couple of weeks ago, property owners and other neighbors hosted an event with outdoor yoga and pop-up installations like Summer House. They even had alpacas.
According to the Washington Post, Amazon also aims to hire and house 27,000 people – from young techie professionals to retirees.
However, in the same post, there have been some negative comments from older residents about noise complaints, while some residents have commented that their rent has gone $400 higher after HQ2 was announced.
Amazon is certainly cementing its roots in Northern Virginia.
With establishing Amazon HQ2, it has already purchased a number of land to create future projects in.
Amazon recently purchased 2 17-acres of land to build data centers out in Loudoun – making it a whopping $34 billion investment.
They also have started opening Amazon Fresh and will add four more around Virginia, with the first location in Kingstowne.
Amazon has also invested in the community by donating $1 million to Northern Virginia public schools – and have given away school supplies and vouchers for school supplies that you can use on Amazon.com.
Find out everything about what Amazon is up to in the resources section.
These are just a few of the highlights that are currently buzzing around the local real estate market.
Most of these topics, not only had articles made after the trend but have also been the talk of the town by current residents. It’s also a good-to-know source if you’re still new or still looking around the area.
|Name of Website||Link||Description|
|alexandrialivingmagazine.com||https://bit.ly/3AZRxTi||Median Home Sales Prices|
|bizjournals.com||https://bit.ly/3j38Nkm||Census Data – Population Growth|
|washingtonpost.com||https://wapo.st/2XDYBGR||Washington Post – Census Growth|
|washingtonpost.com||https://wapo.st/3D0Retk||Washington Post – Census Data|
|patch.com||https://bit.ly/37XxlFc||Fairfax County Car Tax|
|washingtonpost.com||https://wapo.st/3mjpg61||Amazon – National Landing|
|bizjournals.com||https://bit.ly/3iZFvTU||Amazon – Land Data Centers|
|bizjournals.com||https://bit.ly/3kbl8Cz||Amazon – JBG Properties|
|bizjournals.com||https://bit.ly/3szD39F||Amazon – School Donations|
|bizjournals.com||https://bit.ly/3kehEPC||Amazon – $34B Investment|