Land Your Job in Flyover Country.

Ask any college senior where the best jobs are and you’ll probably hear a list of coastal metropolises: New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and the like.

But economic development data tell a different story. Smaller cities away from the coasts are the true hotbeds of economic activity today, thanks to their relatively low costs of living, abundant job opportunities and appealing community amenities.

 This movement is a stark change from decades past, when central business districts in these cities would shut down as office workers headed home to the suburbs. Now, what used to be places to work and leave have become places to work and live. In “18-hour” cities like Denver, Colorado, Nashville, Tennessee, and Charlotte, North Carolina people are staying downtown long after the workday is done. That’s spurring economic growth and the development of thriving residential neighborhoods.

Consider Dallas, which attracted nearly 150,000 new residents last year — more than five times as many as Los Angeles did. Or downtown Denver, where over 10,000 residential units are under construction. That represents a nearly 50 percent increase in the total housing stock.

Mid-size cities are also attracting highly-educated and technologically skilled millennials in disproportionate numbers. From 2010 to 2015, the millennial population in San Antonio, Orlando and Colorado Springs grew at more than 60 times the rate of Chicago’s millennial population.

The growth of secondary cities isn’t new. The Urban Land Institute first chronicled their rise five years ago, and next year could bring even more growth to these cities. According to Emerging Trends in Real Estate, an annual industry forecast published by the Urban Land Institute and PwC, eight of the top 10 real estate markets to watch in 2019 are “18-hour cities,” including Raleigh, Charlotte and Orlando. Dallas topped the list.

Part of the appeal driving smaller cities’ growth? Residents can actually afford to live there. A one-bedroom apartment in Los Angeles costs almost twice as much as it does in Dallas — and for fewer square feet.

Midsize cities are also much more affordable for those looking to put down roots or raise families. Millennials report that affordability concerns — including down payment requirements — are their largest obstacle to homeownership, according to a recent survey conducted by Apartment List, an online apartment rental marketplace. In San Francisco, it would take nearly three decades for millennials saving at the average rate to have enough for a down payment on a home. In Kansas City, Mo., they could do the same in three years.

Even better, affordable secondary cities now largely offer economic opportunities comparable to those available on the coasts. Last year, employment website ZipRecruiter analyzed its database to identify the fastest-growing markets for tech jobs. Phoenix, Kansas City, and Huntsville, Ala., were among the top five.

Amazon’s decision to split its second headquarters between New York and metropolitan Washington dominated the public’s attention last fall. But the tech titan also affirmed the appeal of smaller cities with its $230 million investment in an operations center in Nashville, which will create 5,000 jobs.

These cities have grown into 18-hour urban destinations in part because they’ve developed bustling arts, music, and food scenes. Denver, Austin, Texas, and Charleston, South Carolina are all in the top five of Zagat’s list of the 30 most exciting food cities in America. Ticket seller SeatGeek ranks Nashville second nationwide for U.S. cities with the most major concerts per capita.

In 2018, Austin’s famed South by Southwest festival brought 425,000 musicians, artists, coders, thinkers, and general attendees to the city and contributed over $350 million to the local economy. It’s a safe bet that many people who now call Austin home got their introduction to the city at SXSW.

Of course, secondary cities aren’t entirely without growing pains. While still cheaper than New York or Washington, rents in Raleigh rose from 9 percent of income in 2014 to 21 percent last year. Over that same period, rents in Dallas increased from 16 percent of income to 21 percent. The influx of people to these car-dependent cities is also putting strain on their transit infrastructure.

To maintain their momentum, smaller cities must be smart about how they grow. This means addressing affordability and transportation challenges while simultaneously encouraging investment and development. The upside of doing so is clear. With demographics working in their favor, new households, net migration, and younger populations will keep demand high in these urban cores and surrounding suburbs.

We’ve entered an era in which smaller cities are becoming more competitive with their more established counterparts. The winners will be cities that have figured out how to be places where people enjoy how they live, rather than simply endure it.

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First Friday in February

On the First Friday of every month, thousands of residents and visitors fill the sidewalks of the Crossroads, enjoying what has become the city’s liveliest and most popular recurring event. Arts organizations, galleries, studios, and a wide variety of local businesses feature local, regional and national artists as well as live entertainment from 5 to 9 p.m. Take the free KC Streetcar and avoid the parking hassle!

Whats happening this Friday February 1st:

Don’t forget KCLoftCentral has several buildings located in Downtown Kansas City’s Crossroads neighborhood. Stop by our leasing offices at 2121 Central or 1601 Walnut to take a tour of Stuart Hall, EBT, or Crossroads Lofts. You can also call us at 816-842-6544 to learn about our current specials and availability.

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Valentine’s Sweet Deal

If you are searching for a new apartment, take advantage of the warm weather this weekend and schedule a personalized tour with KCLoftCentral. You will love discovering our distinctive collection of loft apartments at nine historic properties in Downtown Kansas City’s sweetest urban neighborhoods.

If you apply by Valentine’s Day we will waive your admin and application fees! That’s over $200 in savings if you apply before February 14, 2019. And if you move in during the month of February your rent will be free until March 1, 2019!

Available Now: Studio apartments starting at just $875/month, one bedroom apartments starting at $940/month and two bedroom apartments starting at only $1,235/month.

*Must apply and qualify by 2/14/19. This special is for a limited time only and will expire on 2/14/19. Investor condos excluded. Please contact us today to schedule an appointment.


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Butler Brothers Loft #305

Loft #305 is coming soon at Butler Brothers Lofts in Downtown Kansas City. This breathtaking one bedroom loft apartment will be available for rent in February 2019 for $1,215/month. Apartment features include stone counter tops, stainless steel appliances, polished concrete floors, soaring timber ceilings, and a washer and dryer. Lofts at Butler Brothers don’t stay vacant for long so please contact us today if you are interested in leasing this apartment. Call us at 816-842-6544

The Butler Brothers building was originally built in 1909 and is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. This property was meticulously restored by KCLoftCentral and is now home to 30 loft apartments, a fitness studio and private storage area.

Butler Brothers has a prominent Broadway address in the Garment District of Downtown Kansas City. In this quaint urban neighborhood reside some of Kansas City’s architectural treasures, many of which have been preserved by KCLoftCentral. Just outside your front door you will find numerous bars, restaurants, cafes and musical entertainment. The property is also adjacent to the Garment Place Park known for its picturesque central fountain and mature oak trees.

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