During the coronavirus pandemic, housing demand trends have shifted rapidly as more people work from home— major cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco have seen rents drop, while prices have gone up in suburbs and mid-sized cities.
Many of these trends would have been unthinkable to economists this time last year. The median rent in San Francisco has dropped 25% since last March, for example, while Fresno, Bakersfield and Chula Vista have seen some of the largest rent increases in the country in the last ten months. Those that can work from home full time are leaving dense urban centers and opting to move to places with more outdoor and working space. But will these trends last? Given that remote work is likely to stick around at least partially in many workplaces (productivity has not dipped, and companies save money on office space), it’s likely some of these housing shifts will be lasting. However, rent decreases in low-income communities, where higher densities of essential workers live, have not kept pace with the decreases found in wealthier neighborhoods. Low-income Californians are also more likely to be hit by the effects of the recession, including job losses and pay cuts.
Today on AirTalk, we’re learning more about the housing shifts occurring in response to increasing work from home lifestyles, and what that might mean for California’s housing crisis long-term. Questions? Give us a call at 866-893-5722.