The Real Estate Resurgence of Glassell Park and Highland Park

Real estate in Northeast Los Angeles has been booming for years. We hear about it on television and in the news. Rarely does a news story get published where the term “Gentrification” is used to describe areas such as Eagle Rock, Mt. Washington and Highland Park, regions where home values have spiked. Is it something homebuyers and home sellers need to know?

By definition, “to gentrify” is to improve a house or district so that it conforms to middle-class taste. The middle class, or Bourgeoisie, is attempting to emulate upper-class standards. In the U.K., the gentry refer to people of high social position, specifically the class of people next below the nobility. Therefor the gentrification of an area is a process whereby those of lower socio-economic status are forced out of a region in order to make it more attractive to the people of higher socio-economic standing. Taking deteriorating inner city homes away from working class families to be renovated and sold to the privileged is also known as progress, or gentrification.

That is precisely what is occurring in the once run down neighborhood of Highland Park. This ongoing restorative transformation has helped to eradicate crime and strengthen the local economy. Juice bars and yogurt shops have sprung up in place of derelict Laundromats and liquor stores. Local businesses are now thriving, where the windows were once boarded up and car carcasses rusted.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the Northeast Los Angeles neighborhood of Glassell Park, where police not long ago bulldozed suspected gang homes in a dramatic crackdown on crime. Soon after, investors began investing in fixing up Glassell Park’s hillside view homes and property values began to rise with new shops and restaurants appearing in direct proportion.

At one time, Eco Park stood as the poster child for gentrification in Los Angeles. This forgotten slum went through a complete metamorphosis in the 90’s, turning it into one of the most sought after areas east of downtown. With Echo Park as a model, the restoration movement has continued its march east, rehabilitating other areas, such as Highland Park and Glassell Park, with great potential.

One telltale sign of the up and coming neighborhood is what is known as the Starbucks phenomenon. If this “7-eleven” of coffee houses has chosen to plant its green lady logo on the block, you can bet your bottom dollar that the ‘Hipsters are coming’or more likely, the Hipsters have already arrived. This of course means that property values are climbing. In the historic region of Highland Park, York Boulevard is now bookended by Starbucks. Having a Starbucks on the corner is clear evidence that a moneyed community is on the rise. The values of homes for sale in Highland Park are absolutely exploding.

Another way of measuring affluence is by exploring the high volume of trendy restaurants, bars, and art galleries not to mention the cafes populated by too cool for school patrons everywhere. This enclave has become a hot spot for exotic dining among foodies and the like. Good eats just seem to go along with gentrification. That is one of the advantages. Today you can find French, Italian, Japanese, Vietnamese, and a wide variety of Vegan food in this once neglected district. It has become an amazing multi-cultural mecca. One more example of economic growth is improved public transportation. Business people can commute from paradise to downtown by train in a matter of minutes.

Elgin Office Space Leasing

Elgin, Illinois, situated 35 miles northwest of Chicago, is a city which offers options for business owners of various sizes. This is especially true for those who wish to lease office space there. Elgin is located in both Kane and Cook counties and has a population of approximately 110,000 individuals, a size which is quite beneficial for business owners who open their doors in Elgin.

New Housing in Elgin Means More Customers for Businesses

In the past few years, Elgin has seen a surge in new homes, townhomes and condos being built. With the large population base and more housing being created for individuals moving to town, this is a big pull for business owners and a reason why many businesses come to Elgin to lease and buy commercial office space.

Plentiful Transportation Options

Due partly to the fact that Elgin is one of the larger cities in Illinois, the transportation options are readily available. There are three Metra stations in Elgin, including National Street, Elgin and Big Timber Road, along with the Pace bus line which runs through the city at various stops. Amtrak may be planning a future stop in Elgin as well in 2015. For those traveling by car, Elgin is surrounded by various interstates, specifically I-90 and I-355, as well as a vast amount of local roads running through town.

Retail Stores, Restaurants and Entertainment Options in Elgin

There are many wonderful shopping options in Elgin. From well-known national retailers such as Payless Shoe Source and Family Dollar to more specialized local shops including Fat Cat Custom Guitars and Shockey Jewelers, Elgin offers much in the way of shopping. Dining establishments are also wide and varied when it comes to national chains and local restaurants. Some of your dining options in Elgin include Chooch’s Pizzeria, Crave Deli, Dunkin’ Donuts, Gasthaus and more.

For entertainment, Elgin offers the Elgin Symphony Orchestra, Elgin Public Museum and plenty of city parks and golf courses. Whether you crave indoor culture or outdoor activities, Elgin has quite a bit to offer its residents, business owners and business employees. There is also the Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin, for those who like to do a little bit of gaming and indulge in casino dining and entertainment.

The Importance of a Positive Work Atmosphere for Your Small Business

Everyone has their own ideas on how to grow a successful small business. Many business owners spend a great deal amount of money hiring consultants to help them achieve their small business goals, while the answer is often very simple. Employees who love their job, love their co-workers, and enjoy their office space atmosphere make for a positive work environment and a successful small business.

One of the biggest challenges with growing a small business is a high employee turnover. No matter the incentives that are offered, if an employee is unhappy with their job they will ultimately leave. This leaves small businesses with having to constantly train and educate new hires, which can significantly hamper the company’s growth and success. Thankfully, employee turnover can be decreased dramatically if you apply the following steps:

1. Happy employees can be contagious.

Employees who love their job create a positive work environment that can be magnetic to co-workers. An office space atmosphere that is filled with happy employees is a highly successful, non-verbal way of convincing a potential employee to want to join your company and stay long term. Positive energy in the workplace can be sensed and could very well be the sole reason a potential new hire decides to join your company instead of a competitor.

2. There is a reason they are called co-workers.

A co-worker should not be just someone you sit next to at work day-after-day but a support system when your job, or life in general, gets tough. They understand better than anyone the daily struggles that occur at the office. Co-workers that genuinely support one another add a great deal of positivity to an office space environment. With co-workers uniting as a team, there is an unlimited amount of success this could potentially bring your growing small business.

3. Allow time for breaks.

It is important to allow employees a 15-30 minute break during the day. Employees that have this short amount of time away from their desk will return more focused and refreshed than they were before. Studies have indicated that employees who take a 15-30 minute break are ultimately more productive throughout the day than employees who did not.

Employee retention is arguably the most important aspect of a growing business. A positive atmosphere in the office space is crucial to a developing small business. It certainly does not happen overnight, but with the right attitude, team members, and support of one another, the sky’s the limit.