Amazon HQ2 and You

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Did you see that the NY Times decided that Denver is the best location for Amazon’s HQ2? 

Amazon announced this week that they would be opening a second headquarters SOMEWHERE in North America.  The city that wins Amazon’s heart will also win $5 billion investment in the city, 50,000 new jobs over the next 20 years, and street cred with all sorts of other technology firms.  

According the the Times, Denver meets all of the needs that Amazon would want in this secondary headquarters.  We have a pre-existing labor pool from which Amazon can draw, we are a growing city with infrastructure in place for more growth, we have an amazing quality of life, we have an international airport, and have SPACE to put a massive headquarters (we will put aside the pay-to-play issues for now).  

I see this and my brain starts spinning.  If Amazon is moving in, our consistent and record breaking population growth will only continue.  The housing shortage that is showing no signs of improvement will grow worse.  Amazon is bringing in workers that can afford Denver prices– so our affordability ceiling may change.  

Yay for those of us who currently own!  With HQ2 around, our property values will continue to increase (maybe we could avoid the shift that everyone says is coming?).  But for buyers, especially in the middle and lower parts of the market, HQ2 may make home ownership unattainable. Those buyers may be at risk of being priced out unless non-tech wages increase at a much higher pace than they are currently increasing.

What do you think?  Is Denver a good place for Amazon?