What the New Amazon HQ Means for Arlington, Virginia Housing Market

by Ben SanfordJanuary 28, 2019

Expect Big Changes, But Not Mega-Changes From Amazon’s New HQ

In November of 2018, Amazon finally revealed the home (or homes) for its second headquarters. It was revealed that the company’s new HQ2 is to be split between Long Island City, New York and Arlington County, Virginia.

The anticipation for the reveal reached epic levels among the several metropolitan cities in contention, because as it was shown in Seattle, Washington, the inclusion of an Amazon headquarters can lend a massive boost to an area’s economy and housing market. After all, in Seattle, the home of Amazon’s current headquarters, the Internet retailer’s headquarters helped fuel a rise in home prices by 73% and rents by 31%.

Will the same impact be expected in the Arlington area? Here is what we predict will happen to Arlington’s real estate market now that Amazon is coming to town.

amazon opening in arlington virginia

Arlington Already Has a Hot Housing Market

Arlington is a suburb of Washington D.C., and it is already home to a surging housing market. So, experts don’t believe Amazon’s HQ2 will have the same explosive impact as it did in Seattle. Arlington’s market has historically been quick to meet the housing needs of newcomers, so it is better equipped to handle the influx of workers.

Expect More Companies to Follow Amazon

Once Amazon picks a city to be home to one of its headquarters, it opens the flood gates for other companies and corporations to move to town. If this happens in Arlington, and most expect it will, the housing market may become overly congested with buyers and renters, and this could cause prices to hike.

Most at risk are renters, because Virginia does not have rent control policies. With such an influx of people, landlords will see the financial opportunity it brings, and many may choose to raise their rents. This can result in even the best tenants being forced to weigh the pros and cons of paying the higher rates or moving.

One way a good tenant may be able to weather the storm is to negotiate a longer-term lease, like an 18-month lease, in exchange for keeping their rate the same. Some landlords may choose to stay with a reliable tenant over the unknown prospect of renting to someone new.

amazon opening in arlington virginia

More Renters May Choose to Become Buyers

Even though Arlington homeowners aren’t expected to see a tremendous change in their home values, a lot of renters may determine that now is the right time to finally purchase a home. Home prices will inevitably rise with Amazon’s presence – how much remains to be seen – but with interest rates still as low as they are, the time is now for renters who may be looking to make that move.

How Arlington Will Manage Its New Residents

Many in Arlington are worried that the area is already overcrowded, and now that Amazon is coming to town, things will only get worse. The truth is, Amazon’s entry into Arlington is going to occur gradually. Approximately 400 employees will come to Arlington in 2019. By 2020, the number of employees is expected to be around 900. Eventually, the full amount of 25,000 employees will be in place by the late 2020s. Plus, a lot of these employees are people who already live in Arlington.

The state of Virginia is investing $195 million in improving its transportation systems and roadways. This will help curb any extra congestion the influx of people will likely bring.

amazon opening in arlington virginia

Best Advice – Don’t Wait to See What Will Happen in Arlington, VA

Amazon will surely make an impact on Arlington’s real estate market and economy. It won’t be as huge as it was in Seattle, but it will cause home prices and rent rates to rise. If you ever wanted to buy a home in Arlington, then now is probably the time to do it.

Take advantage of the pre-Amazon home prices and the market’s current low interest rates. Interest rates will likely continue to climb through the year, and Arlington’s home prices will as well. Get in while the getting is good, and use Homes.com to find your ideal home in Arlington, Virginia today!

Shares 0
About The Author
Ben Sanford
Ben is a real estate agent and freelance writer. He's lived on the east coast his entire life and is just as "at home" on a snowboard as he is in the office. When not writing about local real estate markets and researching hot new tips for homeowners, he can be found working on his home renovation projects with help from his wife Melissa and their kids, Josh and Cheyenne.