If you want to buy and sell real estate, one of the most pressing concerns isn’t the property assessment or the condition of the surrounding neighborhood – it’s whether there are people you can do business with in the first place!
Ever since the Great Recession in the mid-2000’s, there’s still a lot of trepidation around the job industry and the economy as a whole. As an investor, it’s always important to know where all your potential clients are, from the ones with the most well-paying jobs in a popular vocation to the 20-to-30-somethings who are young and eager to find a new home to rent or buy. Because we’re all based in Connecticut here, how does our state currently fair, exactly?
The health of our job industry
The Connecticut Department of Labor keeps tabs with how many citizens are at work and have found out that the numbers for unemployment are currently steadily low on par with the United States as a whole. Compared to the devastating percentage of around 9% without jobs in the early 2010’s, now those numbers have been cut in half in 2017 with about 4.5%. So, what are the current highest employers in CT right now, according to the Hartford Courant?
- United Technologies Corp.: The multinational conglomerate that deals in aircraft manufacturing has a current revenue of 57.24 billion. You might have heard about their subsidiaries like Pratt & Whitney and Carrier Corporation around the state as well. Thanks largely to their headquarters being nestled right here in Farmington, out of their 2016 overall employees of 201,600, a total of 26,400 reside right here in Connecticut.
- Stop n’ Shop: The northeastern United States supermarket chain with currently 422 locations does so much business in Connecticut that the number of employees ranks #2 at 14,049.
- Hartford Financial Services Group Inc.: Also known simply as “The Harford,” the Fortune 500 company dealing in investment and financial services employs 12,100 right in our state capital.
- Yale University: The prestigious Ivy League research college based in New Haven is renowned as the third oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The number of staff is also impressive at 11,500.
- Foxwoods Resort Casino: Both Foxwoods in Mashantucket and Mohegan Sun in Uncasville are two incredibly popular casinos with their luxury hotels, fine gambling establishments, and quality entertainment that include music band and celebrity performances revered worldwide. Foxwoods takes the number 5 spot with the same employee number as Yale with 11,500, but Mohegan is close behind at 10,000 as #6.
As you can see, the most monumental employers come from very different industries from airplanes to groceries and Ivy League to slot machines.
That’s not all our coastal New England has to share in terms of jobs, according to CT Labor. Insurance is a very prevalent area with Aetna having 10,000 Connecticut employees. Medical employment is also very healthy, with the Immucor medical laboratory in Stamford, Hartford Hospital, and Yale New Haven Health System each having a staff numbering between 5,000 to 9,999. The entertainment industry also deals heavy business here, with both ESPN and the WWE Headquarters having big offices.
More jobs entering Connecticut coming up!
Large businesses are always looking to expand, and our state looks to be having some big names looking to set up shop right here! Here are some of the ones that will make Connecticut jobs look far more relevant once the plans come to fruition:
- Amazon.com: The major internet shopping website in the entire world, and currently the second-largest private employer in America, has had their eyes here for quite some time now with sorting and distributing centers already in Wallingford and Windsor. Once they open their third location in North Haven as part of their $255 million investment, the number of Connecticut employment opportunities should be increasing by 1,800.
- Charter Communications: The second largest cable operator in the country is currently planning a 500,000 square foot, 15-story headquarters in Stamford that should be adding 1,100 new jobs.
- Indeed.com: Currently the highest-traffic job search website in the United States, the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development is set to provide the company a 15-year $7 million low-interest loan to support its planned expansion to Stamford, expected to add 500 new jobs to their office in a few years.
The population numbers in Connecticut are still looking good!
You might have heard through several analytics that Connecticut’s population has been decreasing lately. And while, yes, a few thousand or so have left in recent years, that doesn’t spell doom and gloom for our state. With the density it is right now, keeping itself in the mid 3 millions, there are still plenty of New England people proud to call this their home.
According to the latest estimate made by the US Census based on 2016, the total population of Connecticut is 3,576,452. Despite being the 48th smallest in the country based on land mass, the Nutmeg State is the 29th biggest in terms of population; all accruing into being the 4th highest in population density. In other words, there’s a heck of a lot of people crammed into this New England community!
In terms of the largest communities per town, here are the top five based on CT.gov:
- Bridgeport’s population numbers based on a 2016 estimate is 145,936, an increase of 5.8% since 2000. The demographic numbers for people ages 20 to 24 is 12,674 at a 0.6% boost from the start of the millennium.
- New Haven’s overall population is a decrease from Bridgeport at 129,934 with a 5.4% increase, however the coastal city has the higher 20 to 24 demographic at 14,539 at a 0.66% boost. This city also has had a dramatic number of 227 building permits granted in 2016.
- Stamford is slightly below at 129,113, but does have the more vast population improvement since 2000 at 9.6%. However, the young adult market trails behind at 8,230 with a 0.64% boost.
- Hartford stands at a respectable 123,243, albeit at a paltry 2.6% increase since 2000; however, that’s likely because as the state capital, it’s always been a popular place to live. The younger crowd seems to agree at the demographic numbers of 13,881, a 0.66% increase from a decade prior.
- Waterbury narrowly reaches the 100K numbers at 108,272, albeit at a small increase of 1.9% from before. Despite that amount, the 20 to 24 year old’s seem to like it since 8,185 are residents with a 0.56% increase.
You can look at many more population tables on CT.gov based on a variety of statistics based by age, sex, and race. But overall, it looks like a lot of people are still happy in the western neighbor of New York and not too many college grads are deciding to move out.
What’s the most popular suburban areas looking like?
It’s not surprising that the city areas are the most dense in population, but what about the more rural areas where families want to buy a home or rent a property in a safe neighborhood? Here’s what CT.gov had to say for the most populated based on a 2016 estimate:
- West Hartford: 62,903
- Greenwich: 62,359
- Fairfield: 61,160
- Hamden: 61,125
- Manchester: 57,873
There are also suburban neighborhoods in Connecticut listed as the best suburbs by Niche.com with an overall score of A+ and with a great population number too:
- Glastonbury: 34,584
- Simsbury: 24,407
- Darien: 21,744
- New Canaan: 20,280
- Avon: 18,364
AreaVibes.com also has data on the overall “Best Places to Live in Connecticut” in a continually updated list with all kinds of separate gradings that would be excellent to put out there for interested buyers. Here’s a list of all the towns with a “livability” rating of at least 80% as of late 2017:
- Mystic (Pop: 3,905): Both the low crime rates and large variety of amenities were given the highest rating of A+, and the education reviews are also stellar. The income per capita is also extremely high.
- East Hampton (Pop: 2,402): The grades are largely the same as Mystic with the crime, amenity, and income ratings, but the education is given a full A+ for graduation rates.
- Guilford Center (Pop: 2,394): Notably, the middle of Guilford currently has a very stable housing market and the employment rate has a solid A rating.
- Ridgefield (Pop: 7,599): The median household income is an incredible 66% higher than Connecticut in total. Home value is over double that at being 141% more than the average.
- Newtown (Pop: 2,027): The crime rate here is 85% lower than the Connecticut area so it’s an incredibly safe place to live!
- Portland (Pop: 5,634): The usual high scores for amenities, crime, and education. Portland also has a rating in the B range for great weather, especially during the summer.
Other Notable Accomplishments for CT Towns/Cities
Among the best of Connecticut’s towns and cities spread throughout its eight counties, some have even gotten high regards when compared all across the country. Here are some of the most notable acclaims that have happened recently:
- In Thrillest’s 2017 list of “The Best Town to Visit in all 50 States,” Mystic was chosen as Connecticut’s representative. As they state in the article, “It’s the quintessence of idyllic Rockwellian New England bergs that dot the landscape, here fine-tuned into paradise on the Mystic River.”
- Smithsonian.com’s “20 Best Small Towns to Visit in 2017” included Kent, CT on their list. They found that the various festivals, the great artists, and the “storybook beauty of three state parks to get lost in” couldn’t be ignored on their list.
- U.S. News’ “100 Best Places to Live in the USA” list for 2017 had a few Connecticut entries on their list. The state capital Hartford is ranked #31 and New Haven got #81.
- BestCollegeReviews.org placed Hartford as #17 out of their best college towns in the United States, praising its status as “an economic powerhouse for its size,” its notable colleges, and the many historical attractions and museums in the city.
- USA Today ranked America’s “50 Best Cities to Live In” in late 2017. Danbury was ranked #34 as it “boasts a higher concentration of restaurants, sports teams, and theatre companies than is typical nationwide”
Don’t be dissuaded by all the news updates of percentage decreases right now in Connecticut; there’s a lot of activity on the horizon in the little nutmeg of New England that will make people want to come in droves for. New jobs are coming in, and the cities are trying to build more businesses with options appealing to the younger crowds.
Overall, the density of people looking for homes is already pretty good, and if the economy keep increasing, then all the more will want to look for property in Connecticut.