Reader Question – What do you think about Fifeville?

“curious if you are familiar with the fifeville neighborhood in charlottesville. and if so what you think about the huge price tags on houses in a neighborhood that is clearly still in the early stages of gentrification”

Thank you for the question.

For starters, I wrote about Fifeville last year.

From a market perspective, I like Fifeville. I like its location between the Downtown Mall and University of Virginia’s Main Grounds and its proximity to the restaurants that have sprouted up along West Main Street (cVillain has started using the term “Midtown” to describe this part of the City). As I have said many times before, (almost) any house or neighborhood that offers “walk-ability” to desirable “stuff” – coffee shops, restaurants, shopping, grocery, parks, gyms – will likely be well poised to take advantage of the local real estate market going forward.

Fifeville offers walk- and bike-ability that is almost unparalleled in the City of Charlottesville.

There is opportunity in Fifeville, and hopefully not just that of “making a buck” by flipping houses; the shifting real estate market has seen to that. I have found that those moving into Fifeville seem to be moving with the intent of becoming part of the neighborhood – and that is better for all involved. Is Fifeville in the “early” stages of gentrification? I’d say they’re in the early-mid stages, closer to “mid.”

While I intended to post this question later this week, C-Ville’s Will Goldsmith today puts forth an outstanding and comprehensive story about Fifeville.

Map of Fifeville in Charlottesville

Click here for a larger, legible map.

More also at Charlottesville Community Design Center’s site.

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  1. Arthur May 6, 2008 at 10:43

    It’s fun to read so much written about my neighborhood today.

    Some of the prices people are asking in Fifeville seem too high, but then I am used to seeing a “ghetto-discount” on houses here. That seems to have gone away. I think it is largely due to a change in the neighborhood’s reputation. Five years ago, I had friends call me with very serious concerns when I was weighing whether to buy in Fifeville. I live here now, so the skeptics probably wouldn’t speak as freely, but I gather that the perception has changed.

  2. Jim Duncan May 6, 2008 at 13:48

    There are so many things in this story that buyers want to know about the neighborhood, but as a Realtor I can’t speak to – it’s fascinating.

    I’m very surprised also that he spoke about Joe Mallory so bluntly.

  3. Arthur May 6, 2008 at 15:46

    I too thought Goldsmith’s article was excellent. It’s rare to see the complexities of gentrification dealt with so well.

    The Mallory comment caught my eye too. Sad to say, but the “shoddy rehabber” label is spot on, according to the people I know who live in or have worked on Mallory houses. Thankfully he ran out of cash before he could do more damage.

    He is also right about the reputation of the neighborhood association. I gave up going years ago.

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