If your obsession is CrossFit training or some other fitness program, living near a gym is probably high on your list of priorities when looking for a new home.
For Pennsylvania-based Crossfitter and real estate agent Lindsey Hatfield, this is true. She met her fiancé at the gym and her social life revolves around the place where she works out.
She is living proof that Crossfitters like her want to live near a gym.
In 2017, real estate agents are increasingly calling out proximity to gyms in real estate listings or when showing clients condos or homes — something previously only done with good schools and restaurants.
According to MarketWatch, the percentage of listings in luxury apartments that contained the words “gym”, “weight room” or “workout studio” rose to 11 percent in 2016 versus just 7.4 percent in 2010, according to data from real estate site Redfin.
“A lot of the people I know who do CrossFit want to live near the gym because they either work crazy hours or because they are motivated people,” Hatfield said. “They don’t have a lot of time. Living near the gym to cut down on commute time is one way to solve that.”
Living in close proximity to a high-end gym or a boutique studio like CrossFit may be a key selling point and could help home values.
Developer Ben Shaoul was on the leading edge of this trend. He noted that the luxury Equinox Fitness Club is responsible for boosting sales in one of his developments in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. But the contract with Equinox wasn’t signed until after the condo units, called 196 Orchard had already gone on sale.
Shaoul pointed out that once real estate agents were able to tell potential buyers about Equinox, he says, they saw a 21 percent increase in sales.
Residents are embracing health and fitness with their checkbooks, demanding a more appealing venue for exercise than dungeon-like basement spaces, according to Josh Schuster, the founder and managing principal of Silverback Development.
“Today fitness centers are an absolute must in any new residential project. This is the age of living healthy and most buyers and renters are following the trends in both working out and eating healthy,” he said.
Schuster explained that a fitness center or gym always adds value to a condominium project both on the initial condo price and any resale value.
“Aside from the physical worth is the intrinsic value that an amenity like this brings to residents who live in the building and use it daily,” he said.
According to Hatfield, the “Equinox Effect” and people’s desire to live in walkable areas go hand in hand.
“In terms of some of these boutique gyms like CrossFit, I think part of what’s really appealing besides that it is a gym, is they create a lot of community,” Hatfield said. “I come for the workout and they provide you with a sense of the community. Once you’re involved with that and you have your friends established, all your social life revolves around the gym, and people want to live near that.”