It’s always exciting to be able to invest in the next big neighborhood. Gentrification around city centers usually goes in a pattern that starts with artists and others who need cheap housing that no one else wants. Then their friends and others interested in vibrant culture start to move into the area, particularly if there are older houses that surround the area. Then recent college grads with entry level jobs move into the area. Soon, those recent college grads become professionals bringing in more professionals into the area, particularly if there are single family houses for sale. Now the neighborhood has fairly well gone mainstream. While this process is well understood, another factor that many metropolitan areas, like Seattle, have within their expanding cities is the LGBTAQ+ community.
According to national data compiled by Trulia, gayborhoods have increased in value in popular population centers on average of 60.3%. They studied popular gay male neighborhoods in Palm Springs, California, 4 neighborhoods around San Francisco, and Pleasant Ridge, Michigan (near Detroit). That kind of appreciation in value is tremendous. However, popular lesbian neighborhoods are also gaining value at nearly the same rate at 58.9% in popular places like Oakland, CA, Atlanta, Boston, and in 2 neighborhoods in San Francisco. Even when compared with the appreciation of the greater metro areas these neighborhoods are in, their value remains higher.
It’s hard to predict where the next gayborhood will pop up. Here in Seattle, Capitol Hill has long been a popular LGBTAQ+ area but Capitol Hill is a well established and chic neighborhood which means that market opportunity within the Greater Seattle area could pop up anywhere. Even in existing neighborhoods, many landlords enjoy their tenants in this community that boasts disposable income and many other benefits like strong community ties and long-term stability.
For people who live in the South Sound, especially in the Tacoma area, many neighborhoods are beginning the gentrification process as people flee the high prices of Seattle. There may also be opportunity in the patchwork of cities that surround Seattle. As prices rise, people start looking for new places to live, work, and play. The next time you drive through a neighborhood and see some rainbow flags, you might want to check prices on potential rental property, you might be able to take advantage of the next rising gayborhood.