The need for affordable housing in the Thomas Jefferson PDC is a consistent theme throughout this report. The Charlottesville MSA had the second highest median gross rent as a percent of household income in 2005 (31.7%) of all MSA’s in Virginia. The monthly median gross rent in 2005 for the MSA was $814, and we estimated median gross rent of $871 for two bedroom apartments on the market in January 2006 in the PDC. In 2005, the median house value was $225,500 for the Charlottesville MSA and as of the second quarter of 2006, the median home sales price for the PDC was $265,000. The Charlottesville MSA tied with the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria DC-VA-MD-WV MSA for the highest median monthly owner costs for owners with a mortgage as a percent of household income in 2005 (24.1%).
Despite high prices, home sales in the PDC were robust with sales prices in the second quarter of 2006 increasing in Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, and Louisa counties. The number of days on the market declined steadily from 2000 to 2005 (single-family homes were on the market for an average of 66 days in 2005 and condominiums an average of 32 days). Single-family sales increased 68% between 2000 and 2005 and condominium sales soared over the same time period with a 294% increase in sales. Residential single-family building permits steadily rose through 2005, and the owner vacancy rate for the Charlottesville MSA was less than 1% in 2005 indicating a very tight owner market.
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