Amazon's urban campus in Seattle, Wash. (Jordan Stead / Amazon)

We still don't know which metro area will be home to Amazon's next headquarters, but whichever city is chosen will likely see a rise in housing prices, reports CityLab writer Sarah Holder.

Experts disagree on how disruptive and how immediate said shock will be: It’s clear that an influx of 50,000 employees making an average of $100,000 a year—which Amazon promises to bring—will likely result in an increase in housing prices, and a strain on housing supply; but the magnitude of the effect on each housing market will vary by metro area, and it will take years before all 50,000 employees move in.

“I think it would take a pretty large leap of faith on the part of investors to jump in at this point,” said Zillow’s director of economic research Aaron Terrazas, who did a forecast of Amazon’s impact on rental markets this spring.

But some speculators are already putting bets on the fact that housing prices in the winning city will inflate fast, according to a recent Wall Street Journal article. The paper reported that, following a widely-held hunch that Amazon will pick Northern Virginia to host its HQ2, Ryan Dobratz, co-lead portfolio manager of Third Avenue Real Estate Value Fund, has preemptively bought shares in JBG Smith Properties, which owns commercial real estate in Northern Virginia neighborhoodCrystal City. JBG’s stock value has spiked in recent months.

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