The American Dream is changing. For the past decade and a half, people are actually leaving the once-desirable suburbs and heading to the city to live. The entire definition of quality of life is being turned upside down by Millennials. Everything we were taught to aspire to: The white picket fence. Weekends mowing the lawn. Two cars in the garage. It seems like they just aren’t that important anymore.
Frankly, the suburban benefits no longer outweigh the drawbacks for Millennials. Traffic issues have escalated, as time grows more valuable. With public schools on the decline, the private schools of the city become a better alternative for parents. There is also an unmistakable energy and new employment opportunities that a city provides and there is a generation that wants it. People are willing to give up the space that came with the suburbs for the immense gains in dining, culture, retail and employment choices. Lifestyle choices have been made that actually aid these decisions. They are working in higher paid industries and marrying later in life so the more expensive real estate is an option.
This has been a true shift in thinking. And it’s not only Millennials that have this mindset. Baby Boomers and empty nesters are flocking back to cities, drawn by many of the same reasons the younger generations are: A vibrant, urban lifestyle that seems to have something for everyone. It’s a shift that looks to be sustainable. With U.S. Census Bureau showing increased population growth in 15 cities with populations of 50,000 or more, many cities have planned for this and are ready or getting ready for the influx. Business-friendly environments along with the robust demand for housing have caused cities to offer incentives with density bonuses, bringing more homes and taller buildings. It’s happening all across the nation creating what some are calling a “Golden Age.” The employment is there. The vitality is felt. The homes are being built. And the people are coming.