Posted 5 months ago

Luxury Housing in Worcester, what is it?

There is word on the street that there has been an increase in LUXURY HOUSING in Worcester, but not enough to increase the amount of AFFORDABLE HOUSING in Worcester.

First off, let's define what LUXURY HOUSING is in WORCESTER.

This is a city where most of the multi family housing was built between 1890 and 1930.

There are few buildings that contain more than 6 units.

Okay, here we go with LUXURY.

Level clean floors, fiberglass or tile tub in the bathroom, nice vanity, nice kitchen cabinets, NO PARLOR HEATERS, and available OFF STREET PARKING

This "LUXURY" that people talk about is basically the NEW MINIMUM in Worcester.

Now what % of Worcester has that?  Perhaps only properties that have been renovated in the last 10 years.

I would even venture to say that most of these units came on line in the last 3 years.  Why is that the case?

Rents by Section 8 improved.  This drove up all rents.  This incentivized owners to rehab old apartments with parlor heaters, claw foot tubs and lousy flooring to improve their places.  

This is also driven by new money coming into Worcester from the East.  These investors paid solid prices for their properties and had additional cash to improve them to maximize their investment returns.

There is also a NEW RENTER IN TOWN

I went to college in a cinder block dorm room sharing a bathroom with 60 guys. My 25 year old daughter lived in an off campus apartment complex with a LAZY RIVER, Beach Volleyball Court, individual bathrooms for everyone in the apartment and Video Game rooms.

It is virtually impossible for today's college graduates to live in a 3rd floor walkup in a 3 decker on the side of a hill with no parking, that has a claw foot tub, broken cabinets and parlor heaters.

Let't name the ones people talk about

Sky Mark- 600 Main

145 Front

Voke Lofts

The Edge

Canal Lofts

100 Wall Street

Courthouse Lofts

But how about these?  Are they not of the same quality?

126 Chandler street

128 Chandler Street -Torrey Lofts


Now let us throw in a bunch of 3 deckers that have been improved by various groups and individuals on Bell Hill, or Vernon Hill, are those Luxury?

I would postulate that anything that hits the criteria above would be considered a "Luxury Apartment" by Worcester Standards.  But the only True Luxury Apartments in Worcester are 145 Front Street