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Is Gentrification a Dirty Word?

Where do you stand on the gentrification debate?Gentrification means a variety of different things to different people, but who gets to decide whether the word has a positive or negative connotation?  In many cases, it is actually considered to be a dirty word in the world of social politics and a good thing to real estate investors.  Confused?  Let’s us shed some light on this hot debate.

The word is definitely loaded and at the heart of many controversies, especially in larger cities and urban areas.  Before we can go into any more detail, you first must understand what gentrification is.  The idea behind it is basically to move a neighborhood, which is usually rundown and poor, to a hot and trendy place to be.  This is happening all over the country, but mainly in big cities such as Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles.

When gentrification occurs, the poorer locals often move out of the area and more affluent residents and businesses move in.  In most cases, locals are seemingly forced out of their homes to make way for richer, artistic types, professionals, and families.  That’s why the word is so loaded.   It is definitely a cultural and social issue.

But, if you ask a real estate developer what gentrification really means, you’ll get a whole other story.  In fact, many professionals in the moving industry don’t even recognize it as a phenomenon and consider it more to be history repeating itself.  They see inexpensive land and buildings, buy it up, and move people willing to pay higher prices in.

So, do you live in a neighborhood that has been gentrified?  What do you think about this principle?

Lance Grooms

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