International Relocation: What to Know about Relocating to Northern Virginia

International Real Estate

International Relocation: What to Know about Relocating to Northern Virginia

While Washington D.C. as a whole might have fallen to fifth place in terms of prime cities in which to invest in the US, that trend hasn’t affected northern Virginia, which abuts D.C. In fact, international real estate investors and those choosing to immigrate to the US are choosing Virginia more and more, and it’s really no surprise why that’s the case. Between excellent employment opportunities, low real estate prices and plenty of outstanding education providers, Virginia is an incredible place to call home. What should immigrants know before relocating?

Proximity to D.C.

If one of your main criteria for moving here is proximity to Washington D.C., you’ll want to buy or invest in real estate in one of the main metro areas that make up the greater Washington Metro Area. These include Fairfax, Arlington, Alexandria and Richmond. However, be prepared for higher real estate prices in these areas. With that being said, these are prime options for Chinese buyers, who often appreciate buying a well-known property, as well as for Indian immigrants, who prefer to buy in an area that’s highly walkable.

Technology Corridor

Northern Virginia’s technology corridor has become a prime attraction for international relocation. Chinese and Indian immigrants with technical skills and high education often choose to move to this area. Also called, the “Silicon Valley of the East”, it’s located near Dulles International Airport and provides a home for numerous government contractors, defense companies and more. Of course, there are smaller tech sectors spread throughout northern Virginia, all of which can offer excellent living conditions.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Virginia is lower than many other places in the US, ranking 99 while the nation as a whole ranked 100. Washington D.C. ranked at 140. So, residents choosing to live in Virginia will be able to make their money go further and enjoy lower prices on everything from entertainment to groceries to gasoline and professional services.

Quality of Living

For international immigrants concerned that the lower cost of living goes hand in hand with a lower quality of life, put those fears out of your mind. Northern Virginia is one of the most affluent parts of the entire country and has one of the best qualities of life in the US (Fairfax and Loudoun counties are the top grossing counties in the country in terms of income for residents).


While northern Virginia as a whole is certainly American, you’ll find cultural enclaves throughout. Both Indian and Chinese culture are widespread, with community-specific grocery stores, entertainment options, dining locations and temples/houses of worship throughout the state. Other cultures will find the area equally welcoming.

Northern Virginia has become an incredibly popular location for international relocation thanks to its high standard of living, the availability of excellent jobs, low cost of living and ease of accessing Washington D.C. and other areas. Those trends will continue to play a significant role into the future.


Contact Gene Mock, Associate Broker, Keller Williams Realty, 703-342-8100 to learn more about international relocations.



The Impact of UK Residents on Northern Virginia

Jardin des Vaux de Cernay, Chevreuse

The Impact of UK Residents on Northern Virginia

Northern Virginia has become a melting pot, and it’s done so very quickly. In the first half of the 20th century, the area was predominantly white American. Today, things have changed considerably. The largest minority is Hispanics, followed very closely by those of Asian descent (with Chinese and Indians leading the way). However, those aren’t the only ones choosing to move from their homelands to Virginia. A number of UK residents have opted to call northern Virginia home, and they’ve certainly had an impact.


One area where UK residents have had an impact in the state is in the area of medicine. A number of top doctors in northern Virginia where either born or educated in the UK before coming to the US to practice medicine. These include regional hospitals, as well as the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.


It takes only a quick glance at the streets of Arlington, Fairfax and Alexandria to see one of the major contributions by UK expats choosing to make the area their home. The number of English-style pubs and eateries now enjoyed by residents of the D.C. Metro Area is a direct reflection of the number of UK immigrants moving to the area.


If there’s one sector of the economy outperforming the rest (other than government jobs, of course), it’s technology. There are lots of tech jobs around the D.C. Metro Area, but you’ll find other technology hotspots throughout northern Virginia. Many of these firms employee UK or UK-educated professionals in their operations, ranging from technicians and web designers all the way up to executives.

Adding to Cultural Diversity

Once upon a time, northern Virginia wasn’t particularly diverse in terms of culture. In fact, it lagged behind much of the rest of the nation. Since the late 1900s, that’s been changing, and the pace of those changes is only increasing. Chinese and Indian residents still outnumber those arriving from the UK, but newcomers from across the Pond certainly add to the cultural diversity that marks Virginia today. As more and more jobs open up within government agencies and with international organizations, you can look for the number of UK residents to increase.

That’s particularly true given the current real estate investment outlook for the world. London once beat out New York as the primary real estate investment location, but those roles have reversed with the arrival of 2015, and it extends to all areas of the country. Washington D.C. (and by connection nearby cities in Virginia) ranks as the fourth most popular city in the world for UK real estate investment. Europeans from Germany, France and other nations are following the UK’s lead here.

In summation, while the presence of UK residents might not get the press that Chinese, Indian and even Canadian residents do, they’re certainly here, and they’ve become an integral part of the northern Virginia community, adding to the increasingly diverse culture here.


Impact of UK Residents on Northern Virginia

Contact Gene Mock, Associate Broker, Premier Team, Keller Williams Realty 703-342-8100 for more information about investing in Northern Virginia real estate

Gene Mock Realtor