An old friend of mine bought a dirt-cheap house in a very rough neighborhood in a large city right after we graduated. He actually lived there, too, and his house was robbed at least once.
Fifteen years later, his neighborhood is becoming “gentrified.” In other words, the neighborhood has seen an influx of upscale businesses and wealthier residents. Many of these businesses and residents are refurbishing the buildings that are already in place, turning some rough buildings into very nice places. The crime rate has dropped as the community has invested in better police coverage and the property values are skyrocketing.
My friend still lives there and is now struggling with the question to sell now or stick around. In some ways, he likes how the neighborhood is changing, but he told me that the neighborhood actually had more charm ten years ago when it was mostly full of, in his words, “weirdoes and new college graduates.”
Still, I can’t help but want to give him a high five. If you can buy a house in a neighborhood just before gentrification begins, you’ve just purchased a golden ticket.
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