In the last 5 years Downtown San Diego has changed…. a lot. The re development of downtown has brought lots of new apartment complexes, commercial spaces, a new law school, a new public library, Petco Park, a new pedestrian bridge, new restaurants, bar and entertainment venues and its not over yet. There are plenty of new projects planned for Downtown San Diego in the next few years.
All this change has brought a big variety of people to live in downtown. One observation I can make is how the Generation Y seems to be predominantly buying or renting condos in the East Village District as compared to other districts because of lifestyle choices in the neighborhood and the presence of affordable condos, apartments and lofts in the area.
What is the Generation Y?
Gen Y is also know as the Millennial Generation following Generation X. There is no precise birth dates to define Gen Y’ers but people tend to define them as those people born between 1980 and 2000. Gen X’ers tend to be defined as born between late 1950’s and 1980. Gen Y is the fastest growing segment entering the workforce and a big driver in downtown San Diego’s first time home buyer market.
What are the main characteristics of Gen Y’ers?
- increased use and familiarity with communications, media and digital technologies (tech savvy)
- neoliberal approach to economics and politics
- wait longer to move out of parent’s home which promotes progress towards autonomy and self reliance
- wait longer to get married and start a family since “being a parent is one of the most important things in life” and not easy to learn
- support for smaller families over larger families (love dogs!)
- environmentally conscious
- focus on improving lifestyle (willing to trade high pay check for a better work/lifestyle balance)
So why are Gen Y’ers moving to the East Village over other areas of downtown?
There are many reasons why, among them:
- Proximity to Gaslamp District, downtown’s nightlife and entertainment district
- Proximity to Petco Park
- Walkability to access things to do an places to go
- Availability of a great fitness center (FIT San Diego)
- Proximity to a Doggie Park (the park at Petco Park)
- Availability of places to gather and mingle (coffee shops, bars, parks, bowling tavern)
- Variety of property types and styles to fit all budgets (the East Village has a bit of everything: entry, mid and upscale level condos in mid and high rise buildings)
I have worked with many clients members belonging in the Gen Y group and some observations I can make as far as what they look for in a an apartment are the following:
- High Walkability to eliminate dependence on a car to go places.
- Bathrooms in which the soak tub does not take half the space available. There seems to be a preference for standing showers that are spacious.
- Bigger bedrooms and living rooms (to fit the big flat screen TV’s) and smaller formal dining rooms.
- Availability of a patio or courtyard that does not require lots of maintenance but provides enough space to gather and cookout with friends and that serves as a replacement of a formal living/dinning room (specially with San Diego weather).
- Amenities: “the more the merrier”. Condo complexes with amenities such as swimming pool, outdoor community areas with firepits, movie theatre room and gym tend to be the most popular (despite higher HOA fees).
- Activities: There seems to be a lot of value placed on community activities so people can gather, socialize and make new friends& business contacts.
So based on this what are the best buildings in the East Village to cater to the needs of Gen Y?
Entry/Mid Level: M2i Condos and Lofts
With a gym, community deck, low HOA fee and a superb location a few blocks away from the ballpark M2I Condos and Lofts San Diego is definitely the best in the East Village District San Diego as an entry or mid level type complex. In this condo complex there are loft, 1 & 2 bedroom type units ranging in price from the 250,000 to about $1 million for top level penthouse units.
Upscale/Luxury Level: The Legend
The Legend Condos San Diego has some of the best amenities in all downtown (amenities in buildings by BOSA are by far the best downtown). At The Legend they include: a swimming pool, gym, indoor community gathering area, concierge services, sauna, steam room and the best outdoor lounge in downtown San Diego equipped with a full kitchen, BBQ grills, firepits and it overlooks the field at Petco Park. HOA fees are a bit higher (average $750 per month) but very well worth it considering other luxury buildings charge between $750 to $1,100 per month for amenities not even comparable to The Legend’s.
The Legend offers 1 & 2 bedroom condos and 3 bedroom town homes. 1 bedroom’s start in the high $200’s, 2 bedrooms in the mid $300’s and townhomes in the mid $600’s. Some of these units have unbelievable views towards Petco Park, the bay and downtown San Diego. Visit The Legend Condos page to view detailed information, photos and floor plans as well as available units for rent and for sale.
For rentals purposes Strata offers very cool amenities (pool, gym, movie theater, concierge services and more) and community events are organized weekly. Strata is a rental property, there are no condos for sale here.
If you like more information on any of these properties or to get more information on downtown San Diego Real Estate please contact us for a consultation!