Urban Migration of College Grads May Slow

By on Wednesday, April 30th, 2008 at 6:26 am

Over the next few weeks, colleges across the country will begin graduating a new class, sending thousands of young people into the job market. In years past, many freshly minted college graduates have flocked to New York City, and shortly after realizing they can’t afford Manhattan, end up in the outer boroughs– Brooklyn, Queens, and of course, Jersey City.

But this year may be very different than years past. The financial sector in New York could shed up to 36,000 jobs, making this year particularly difficult for new graduates as more experienced workers become job seekers. Meanwhile, as the economy slumps across the nation, upper middle class parents may be less inclined to support their precious young hipsters with rent subsidies.

In recent months, several former condominium projects planned for Jersey City have switched to rental projects. While credit may be hard to come by, people always need a place to live, and rentals can better weather the storm. However, if the supply of fresh young renters dries up, even the rental market could be hurt. The luxury rental towers are less likely to feel the pinch on this side of the river, with higher rents demanding more established young professionals. But a dearth of young hipsters will certainly begin reduce demand on brownstone apartment rentals, or larger luxury rental units that can be shared by roommates. Many new college graduates may opt to spend more time in their parent’s suburban houses, rent free, or in cheaper college towns than make the move to the big city.

Still, the summer rental period is long. New job seekers are more likely to find employment in September than in June anyway, but its unlikely the economy will do an about face in four months. On the plus side, for those already in the market, this summer may be a great time time to find a good deal on a new rental.



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