Lancaster Expects Real Estate Marketing Boom
by John Spidaliere
It appears almost certain that Lancaster's real estate marketplace will be seriously affected by the COVID Recession. Economic data suggests that some small towns, like Lancaster, are poised for monumental market growth, even as a recession affects much of the nation.
As a city real estate broker, people have been asking me what the market will look like as the stay-at-home order lifts and life returns to “normal” in our community.
Media reports and economists are hinting at some seismic shifts in the housing market. Many are looking at the high rents in the nation’s super metropolises and wondering, “where can I live more cheaply and still maintain a high quality of life?”
Economists at the Brookings Institution recently suggested that in the wake of the COVID recession, America's supercities like New York may soon face an exodus, due in part to high housing costs, and an inability to maintain a healthy standard of living.
Indications seem to point to a population of people (primarily young, upwardly mobile, artistic, and tech-savvy) that are rethinking the feasibility of surviving the rising housing costs in cities like New York and Boston, Philadelphia, and Baltimore.
According to a Harris poll in late April, many city dwellers are thinking of quitting large cities and finding smaller cities like Lancaster to land. Nearly a third of Americans are considering moving to less populated areas in the wake of the pandemic.
Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors, was recently quoted in USA Today saying, “People will be much more cautious about living in high-density areas with so many people nearby.” The pandemic and the recession has people looking at their four walls and asking, “Is this what I can look forward to?”
Small cities like Lancaster tend to give people a high quality of life with a lower price tag. Consider that a tiny one-bedroom apartment on 18th Street in Brooklyn today costs $2,300. The same size apartment on North Pine Street in Lancaster, costs less than half that at $1,000 a month. The disparity in home sales is even more stark. A three-bedroom, two-bath, 1,800 square foot home on 99th Street in Brooklyn is presently on the market for $600,000, and the ad describes it as a steal! A slightly larger, fully-remodeled home on East Orange Street in Lancaster is on the market for $350,000.
Forbes has called Lancaster one of the “coolest cities” in America. The NY Times and Baltimore Magazine have raved about our restaurant scene, our microbreweries and distilleries, and of course Central Market. We are basically a foodie heaven.
And we are set up for growth. A NYTimes columnist, Tom Friedman, recently highlighted Lancaster's revitalization from a near ghost town just 30 years ago to the arts-centric, innovative, tech-friendly city it is today. The city is politically progressive and welcoming to everyone. Lancaster thrives off the energy of new transplants and rewards the entrepreneurial spirit.
As the real estate broker at LancLiving Realty, my colleagues and I are thrilled to see this trend become more and more of a reality. We know how extraordinary Lancaster is and are more than happy to show you around.
To learn more about Lancaster, visit VisitLancaster City.com.
John Spidaliere is the broker and owner of LancLiving Realty, a proudly independent and fiercely local real estate company located in downtown Lancaster. He, his wife Alaina, and their two kids, live in Lancaster. He can be reached at 717-425-9892 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.