Best Neighborhoods of Seattle for Young Professionals

Best Neighborhoods of Seattle for Young Professionals
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With a laid-back lifestyle, community-oriented neighborhoods, and great jobs available, it’s easy to see why Seattle continues to draw young professionals year after year. Several big corporations, like Amazon, Microsoft, and Costco, contribute to a strong and stable job market.

Real estate investment opportunities are endless in this Evergreen State, with one of the hottest housing markets in the nation. Despite relatively low inventory, the high demand created by thriving employment, and a 40% renter fraction, investors will have plenty of attractive options in 2022. Here are our top picks for the best Seattle neighborhoods for young professionals.

TIP: Wondering whether you’re ready to take on an investment property in Seattle? Baselane’s Rental Property ROI Calculator can help you better understand if a rental property is a good deal.

1. Capitol Hill

  • Median home price: $630,000
  • The median price per square foot: $682
  • Rental vacancy rate: 14.85%
  • Distance to city center: 1.9 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Link light rail, bus, streetcar
  • Median rental income: $2,050/month

Capitol Hill sits just a few miles northeast of central business district hubs in Seattle. Notorious for trendy restaurants, the best bars in Seattle for young adults, and the city’s LGBTQ+ community, this hood will have your entertainment meter maxed.

This densely populated region of over 32,000 is buzzing with fun restaurants, boutique shops, coffee shops, and a spacious volunteer park, giving singles and young professionals plenty of ways to get out and about. If residents need to get to other parts of DC, Capitol Hill has a Metro station within walking distance of most homes.

With the pandemic slowdown long gone, the cost of renting in Seattle, including in the popular neighborhood of Capitol Hill, has surged 18% in the past year. However, most renters won’t bat an eye at the additional cost, with an average household income of $174,896.

In Capitol Hill, these numbers, paired with a high demand for housing and low vacancy rates, provide landlords with the opportunity to continue increasing rental prices. The vibrant nightlife culture and accessibility of Capitol Hill make it an attractive option for many, further driving the local housing market.

2. Belltown

  • Median home price: $538,800
  • The median price per square foot: $749
  • Rental vacancy rate: 6.6%
  • Distance to city center: 0.9 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Link light rail, bus, streetcar
  • Median rental income: $2,500/month

Belltown exemplifies urban living at its best with homes and high-rise condos, an abundance of restaurants, bars, and retailers, and its spectacular waterfront perch overlooking Puget Sound. Consider this one of the best neighborhoods in Seattle for young couples and professionals, especially those who don’t like sitting in traffic or are looking for a spot where they don’t need a car.

The stunning views of Puget Sound and the convenience of city living make Belltown an ideal location for those who appreciate both natural beauty and urban amenities.

Out of the 27,051 inhabitants who call Belltown home, most of its residents are young singles, urban power couples, and high-income executives, also known as ideal tenants. With one of Seattle’s hottest real estate markets, finding a rental property in Belltown will be a breeze.

This formerly low-rent, semi-industrial arts district recently transformed into a trendy neighborhood. Rent-paying tenants occupy 81% of Belltown’s properties compared to Seattle’s much lower rental rate of 52%. The average rent of $2,500 is also a 30% increase from the previous year, indicating a faster return on investment for landlords.

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3. South Lake Union

  • Median home price: $550,500
  • The median price per square foot: $722
  • Rental vacancy rate: 13.9%
  • Distance to city center: 2.1 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Link light rail, streetcar, bus
  • Median rental income: $2,799/month

Young professionals know Seattle is the hub of tech companies, and South Lake Union is the perfect place for STEM workers with high-tech jobs. This 170-acre community of 31,000 is home to Amazon and sits along the banks of Lake Union, making it the ideal spot to stay active or unwind with some waterfront scenery.

The vibrant neighborhood offers recreational activities on Lake Union, such as kayaking, sailing, and paddleboarding, providing a unique urban experience with a touch of nature and a green lake park. Living near Lake Union not only adds a sense of peacefulness but also offers endless opportunities to enjoy the outdoors.

South Lake Union has access to fantastic transportation options getting you to and through the city on the streetcar, light rail, or bus. And while public transit is a plus for being a resident in one of the best places to live in Seattle for young professionals, its streets are completely pedestrian and bike-friendly.

It’s easy to see why South Lake Union is ideal for real estate investors looking to cash in. This area has one of the highest rental incomes and lowest pricing for Seattle houses for sale on our list, only increasing by 1.9% in the past year. With nearly 78% of real estate properties occupied by renters, landlords have a low barrier to entry into a high-volume market.

4. Ballard

  • Median home price: $1,100,000
  • The median price per square foot: $616
  • Rental vacancy rate: 2.1%
  • Distance to city center: 6.7 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Link light rail, bus
  • Median rental income: $2,804/month

Ballard is the perfect compromise for young professionals looking to live close to the city’s heart without the premium price tag. With housing options ranging from single-family homes to newly-constructed condos and luxury apartments, young adults could want or need everything in a big city.

Originally considered a separate city, Ballard is one of Seattle’s biggest and trendiest spots, with over 28,000 residents. Home to some of the best seafood and restaurants, this walkable urban core boasts many community-oriented and outdoor activities like farmers’ markets, indie stores, and craft breweries.

Rich in culture and green spaces, Ballard offers residents and visitors alike the opportunity to enjoy lush green parks and scenic landscapes. The emphasis on green spaces enhances the community’s commitment to sustainability and quality of life, making it an even more attractive place to live and visit.

While housing prices sky-rocketed in Ballard (the median home price at $1.1 million), the high demand and rental vacancy of 2.1% indicate a low tenant turnover. Since rent control is illegal in the state of Seattle, landlords have no restrictions on raising rent prices as long as adequate notice is given and in line with the lease terms.

5. Fremont

  • Median home price: $805,000
  • The median price per square foot: $641
  • Rental vacancy rate: 4.9%
  • Distance to city center: 6 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus
  • Median rental income: $2,815/month

Fremont is known for tight-knit communities of hipsters, artists, and tech professionals. Sitting just north of Downtown, nearby companies like Adobe and Google draw a particularly funky and quirky crowd. Fremont’s unofficial motto is Libertas Quirkas, meaning “freedom to be peculiar.”

Most housing options in this vibrant area are rentals, including large apartment complexes and one-bedrooms, averaging an affordable price point of $1,845. While smaller listings make Fremont the best place to live in Seattle for young adults on a budget, the average household income of $136,968 is enough to support the upward trend of pricing increases of around 7% year-over-year.

The median real estate price is $1,126,546, which is more expensive than 92.3% of the cities in Washington. Although the average rental price of $2,815 brings in 80% more rent than other areas in Washington. Fremont has great prospects and earnings to gain if you have the capital to invest.

6. Queen Anne

  • Median home price: $1,750,000
  • The median price per square foot: $652
  • Rental vacancy rate: 7.8%
  • Distance to city center: 2.5 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Link light rail, bus
  • Median rental income: $2,095/month

The hills are abuzz with adventure, spectacular scenery, and indie shops in the Seattle district of Upper Queen Anne. Upper Queen Anne is the perfect example of blended residential and commercial living, making it a unique and desirable area. Being close to the Burke-Gilman trail adds to the appeal, offering residents easy access to a beloved recreational path that provides additional outdoor activities and exploration opportunities.

Adjacent to Downtown and nestled in the heart of Queen Anne, it has all the iconic landmarks of Seattle, like the Space Needle and Chihuly Glass and Garden. The charm and convenience of Queen Anne create an appealing blend that attracts both residents and visitors alike.

Although Queen Anne is more expensive than some of Seattle’s other neighborhoods, Lower Queen Anne features many affordable apartments ranging from $1,355 for a studio to $2,600 for a 2-bedroom apartment. With a selection of bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and reasonable rent prices, this city is perfect for students and young professionals.

Just this past month, the average rent for a studio apartment in West Queen Anne increased by 24%, with a total 14% increase over the past year. Landlords will need to invest more upfront to break into the market, but the average household income of $140,802 and 51% of households being renter-occupied indicate stability for rent collection.

Is Seattle a Good Real Estate Investment?

Take the time to speak with an agent who lives in your areas of interest and use our Rental Property ROI Calculator to evaluate the next Seattle Rental property deal.

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Financial Technology, Real Estate Investing, and Property Management, Accounting and Tax, Finance
Saad started his career as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) working for a top-tier accounting firm. He was responsible for helping audit alternative investment funds. He later worked at a hedge fund where he was responsible for preparing financial statements and implementing new technology. He also ran a successful private tax practice for five years.

After completing his MBA at Duke, Saad joined The Boston Consulting Group to do management consulting. At BCG his experience spanned several industries and growth projects across Pharma, Retail, and Technology companies. His passion for democratizing finances led him to Plaid, a fintech, where he worked with large Banks and Financial Institutions to make finances and money easier for all.
Best Neighborhoods of Seattle for Young Professionals
Best Neighborhoods of Seattle for Young Professionals