Housing Complex

Hold Onto Your Leases People…D.C.’s Filling Up Fast.

DCcrowd

In roughly six months, my roommates and I will need to renew the lease for our Northwest townhouse. I'm ready to sign some papers now.

Given the anecdotal evidence I've heard, and some hard facts floating out there—see below, they're coming—its seems D.C.'s housing crunch will probably be worsening in coming years.

The  Washington Post recently reported on future hiring demands in the D.C.-area. Surprisingly, the entire region will see a net loss this year. But just wait:  "The region is expected to see net gains in jobs: 23,900 in 2010; 34,900 in 2011; 42,000 in 2012; 47,600 in 2013; and 53,300 in 2014," according to the story.

And that means great things for developers

Analysts said they expect the new jobs to drive demand for housing in the region, accelerating recovery of the market. July housing sales in the region were up 12.6 percent from the same month in 2008, according to the Center for Regional Analysis, and inventory shrank to 6.2 months in July from 11.5 months in January.

"The job growth in D.C. will bring new people into the labor force and drive demand for apartments and houses," said Frank Nothaft, chief economist at Freddie Mac. "That will have a ripple effect in [boosting interest in new houses] and creating construction jobs."

Gregory H. Leisch, chief executive of Delta Associates, a real estate and economic research firm in Alexandria, said several agencies, including the Justice and Treasury departments, have recently signed leases in the commercial office market to accommodate growth. He said he expects that trend to accelerate with the federal hiring, which could reduce the 47 million square feet of vacant space in the region.

Image by Joe in DC, Flickr Creative Commons

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