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Old 03-06-2011, 09:49 AM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
16,842 posts, read 16,642,740 times
Reputation: 16378

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One other reason was the speculative buying/flipping that went on for several years. It was like sharks in the water for about 5 years. People were getting into $500K houses with $0 down and $50K salaries. Those houses are now called foreclosures. Consequently, in MD at least, housing prices in much of Metro DC has dropped anywhere from 13% to 60%.
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Old 03-06-2011, 09:53 AM
 
5,179 posts, read 3,510,349 times
Reputation: 2392
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajzjmsmom View Post
I find everyone's assumptions that gov't workers make so much money very funny. Somehow along the way they forgot to allow that to trinkle down to the majority of the gov't workers.
I think my father got to a GS-14, maybe 15 back in the early 1980s. We had a very middle class life living in an average NOVA suburb, had one car, no frills in our lifestyle. My mother did not work. Certainly the pay for a GS-15 is a lot more now, but so is the cost of living.

The people I currently know who make a very good living tend to be lawyers, not government employees, and they are dual-income families.

And for a poster to claim that getting a few rep points on an anti-government post is some mark of accomplishment, well, that's
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Old 03-06-2011, 09:59 AM
 
186 posts, read 273,518 times
Reputation: 110
Traffic is also a big influence there is not an adequate public transportation system from the outlying areas. So people want to live close in to avoid the traffic hence the term inside the beltway

In New York, NJ and Ct for instances you have Metro North, so you could live in Stamford Ct for example take Metro North to the city and than subway or hoof it to your office. Thats about 35 miles and 51 comfortable minutes on the train.

There is also LIR Jersey Transit all of which allow people to live further out and have a comfortable commute to work utilizing public transportation
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:13 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,141 posts, read 16,497,023 times
Reputation: 6483
Quote:
Originally Posted by robbobobbo View Post
I think my father got to a GS-14, maybe 15 back in the early 1980s. We had a very middle class life living in an average NOVA suburb, had one car, no frills in our lifestyle. My mother did not work. Certainly the pay for a GS-15 is a lot more now, but so is the cost of living.

The people I currently know who make a very good living tend to be lawyers, not government employees, and they are dual-income families.

And for a poster to claim that getting a few rep points on an anti-government post is some mark of accomplishment, well, that's
Houses with two spouses who hold government management positions can likely afford a home over $500,000, which seems pretty average here but in other parts of the country would be considered out of reach for most families.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:26 AM
 
2,055 posts, read 2,412,674 times
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Not only are there many dual income couples here, but also education levels are much higher than in the rest of the country. So rather than one partner making substantially less, both partners may hold professional jobs with high incomes.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:26 AM
 
Location: Virginia
18,717 posts, read 15,638,857 times
Reputation: 42361
Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
One other reason was the speculative buying/flipping that went on for several years. It was like sharks in the water for about 5 years. People were getting into $500K houses with $0 down and $50K salaries. Those houses are now called foreclosures. Consequently, in MD at least, housing prices in much of Metro DC has dropped anywhere from 13% to 60%.
That may be more of an issue in MD, but not so much in Nova. At least, not where I am. The foreclosures seem to get snapped up quickly and turnover in general is pretty fast. The problem in Loudoun right now seems to be low inventory.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nancy707 View Post
Traffic is also a big influence there is not an adequate public transportation system from the outlying areas. So people want to live close in to avoid the traffic hence the term inside the beltway
Actually, most of the job growth right now is outside the beltway. People moving here are usually headed to jobs in the Dulles Tech Corridor, which is a good 30 miles outside the beltway. But you are right about traffic being an influence--people wanting a short commute to their high paying jobs in the tech corridor are a big reason home prices are high in the western burbs.

PW County and Stafford also seem to be drawing a large number of home buyers currently.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Taxmanistan
4,286 posts, read 4,072,023 times
Reputation: 2081
OK, let me deflate some of these erroneous claims first:

1. Claim: Prices are high because of high government worker salaries.

Fact: According to the General Schedule, a starting salary for Washington, DC, for someone starting in the government with a bachelor's degree and no experience (GS-7, step 1) is 42,209 or (with a master's degree) GS-9, step 1--$50, 630. Exorbitant? I don't think so. At any rate, look at the federal pay rates for other areas of the country, and you'll see that fed salaries here are on par. In fact, Houston federal workers are paid more than those in DC.

Fact: The most you can make as a federal employee, other than a doctor or dentist, is $199,700, as part of the Senior Executive Service. That's for the equivalent of a four-star general. It's less than what the average dermatologist makes. And those parasite investment bankers who have wrecked our economy? Don't get me started.

2. Claim: Housing prices are high because we have so many two-earner families.

If that were the cause, then why did housing prices here go up suddenly only in 2003? And why are prices in other cities where there are many two-earner households not go up as much?

Fact: The DC area is like every other large American city, in that the majority of households have two incomes since at least the 1980s. It's not much different here in that regard from Dallas, Cincinnati, Chicago, or Seattle.

So what's the real reason prices here are so high?

My opinion:

The early 2000s saw a huge influx of federal money for defense contractors and a sharp increase in the number of lobbyists, who make very high salaries and want to live close in.

In addition, major cities in the Rust Belt and the South saw manufacturing jobs decline--so many of those people (and their children) moved where the jobs were--including DC. And generally, people in rural America have been moving to the cities--a long established pattern that has probably accelerated in recent years.

Also, the employment areas in the DC area are fairly focused--DC, the Arlington-Dulles defense corridor, Crystal City, the Rockville-Gaithersburg NIH corridor, and smaller areas here and there. I believe this concentration is not as common in other cities.

But prices here were fairly normal through the 1990s--so I think the main cause is the sudden influx of thousands of new defense/intel jobs after 9/11 and thousands of overpaid lobbyists.

Last edited by Carlingtonian; 03-06-2011 at 11:33 AM.. Reason: Fixed GS salary info.
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:36 AM
 
404 posts, read 619,408 times
Reputation: 345
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesco White View Post
Because we have jobs.. Moderator Cut
so bradjl2009's comment wasn't considered a personal attack to nova residents?
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Censorshipville...
2,439 posts, read 3,830,777 times
Reputation: 1199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesco White View Post
so bradjl2009's comment wasn't considered a personal attack to nova residents?
No that was just an incorrect assumption - lol

Lighten up Francis...
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Old 03-06-2011, 01:37 PM
 
Location: South South Jersey
1,652 posts, read 2,243,459 times
Reputation: 712
The gubmint employees aren't the high earners in this area - I speak from personal experience, here. It's private sector people whose companies/firms/organizations are somehow involved with the Federal government.
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