Our Economy and the American Dream

Important factors in the Real Estate market include good paying jobs and the overall economic conditions of a region. Of course, the economic conditions of the nation, affects interest rates and despite a sluggish national economy, I want to focus on the economy of West Virginia.

Several weeks back, I listed several employers, who have either relocated to, expanded in, or announced new start-ups in the Mountain State. Some of these companies are in our smaller communities, which is an incredible boost to those areas. Others are in our cities such as Charleston, Martinsburg, and Morgantown. Mountaintop Bottling is one of the newest employers in Mon County, and their arrival was a massive relief after the huge loss of Mylan. The following is from Mountaintop’s LinkedIn page:

Mountaintop Beverage is in (the) early-stages of building out a clean manufacturing facility and is preparing to operate, produce, process and package aseptic and extended shelf-life beverages on behalf of its signed customers (brands), in the food and beverage industry. Initial plant size will be 330,000 square feet and the company plans several plant expansions over next several years to more than double that size.

I had a client who’s a former Mylan employee, who landed a job at Mountaintop. He and a coworker I met, are pleased with their new employer. Mountaintop and other potential tenants of the industrial park, not to mention WVU, our hospitals and others are all integral to our overall economy. Of course, North Central WV has essentially developed into a small metro area reaching past Fairmont and down to the Clarksburg / Bridgeport area. Other employers within our metro area include Fairmont State University, NASA, Mon Power, the FBI, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, and many other large and small businesses.

Becoming a homeowner has been described as the American Dream by US Presidents and thought leaders but there are countries who don’t share the same property rights we enjoy here. The catch to achieving the American Dream however is, that it isn’t easy. It is NOT an entitlement. In most cases, it takes hard work, saving money and building credit, to reach this milestone and one of the biggest pieces in that process, is gainful employment. Sometimes it requires working multiple jobs. I would argue that this is what America was built upon and made our country great.

Here in North Central WV, we’re experiencing a strong jobs market for a region our size. In addition, more retailers are popping up in places such as Westridge, Middletown Commons in White Hall, as well as in Bridgeport. Government funding for a road widening project along Chaplin Hill Rd will benefit Mylan Park. The Mileground project came to fruition and the proposed Harmony Grove interchange off I-79, will greatly enhance conditions for more growth. In addition, another industrial park is in the works off I-68 near the airport.

All of this is vital for a strong Real Estate market, and we should be grateful that Morgantown is the economic engine of the Mountain State.