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United States of America (USA) - Virginia

The state of Virginia can be found on the Atlantic Coast of the US. It has the distinction of being the birthplace of no less than 8 US presidents. The state is bordered by Maryland and Washington DC, as well as North Carolina, Tennessee and Kentucky. The capital of the state is Richmond and other large urban areas include Chesapeake and Norfolk. The population of the state is almost 8 million people. There are 39 cities and almost 100 counties in Virginia.

The climate of the state varies and there are very cold winters and very warm summers. The area is prone to hurricanes, particularly near the coast and thunderstorms are a regular occurrence.

The state has a relatively small community of expats, coming mainly from Europe and Far East Asia.

Virginia – Employment

One of the main sources of income for the state of Virginia is tourism. The coastal areas in particular receive thousands of visitors each year and there are some opportunities in this field. There are numerous hotels and guest houses in the area although the work is seasonal. Some expats have moved to the area in order to open their own guest houses, although there is a lot of paperwork involved as licences are required from the state government.

Nearly one third of all jobs in the state come from the service sector. There is a relatively low unemployment rate of around 7% in Virginia and the state is considered to be one of the best for new businesses. There are more technology workers in Virginia than in any other state and computer components are one of the state’s main exports. There are opportunities for both skilled IT professionals and unskilled workers in this sector.

Agriculture is a major part of the Virginia economy, and nearly a quarter of the land in the state is given over to it. This is much less than a few decades ago, but there is still a strong industry in place. Vineyards have begun to appear in the state which has helped to increase tourism to the rural areas, but employment opportunities in agriculture are not as common as for other sectors.

Virginia – Property

Richmond, the state capital of Virginia, has a wide variety of housing for those considering moving to the area. As with all cities, there are different districts and if you choose carefully you can find one that suits your needs.

The Downtown District of Virginia is the main business area, so properties in this district are mainly apartments which are aimed at the young professional market. These are relatively expensive when compared with similar properties elsewhere. These properties are mainly new developments and there are many high rise blocks, both residential and commercial.

The district of Carytown is a very small district and attracts mainly artists and students. Property is mostly rented out, and is very reasonably priced. The variety of shops in the district is very different to main stream shops, with many small outlets selling unusual items. In contrast, the Church Hill district is a residential area filled with family homes. These are mainly older style properties as the district is one of the oldest in the city.

The Court End district is a reflection of the heritage of the city and the period properties which date from the 19th century. This does have an effect on property prices as they are slightly higher in this district than in some of the others. The same applies to the Fan district, which also has large numbers of period properties.

In the city of Chesapeake the district of Deep Creek is a mainly residential area consisting of single family homes. Most of these houses are a good size with large gardens. It is a reasonably tranquil area of the city with little modern development. In contrast, the district of Camelot is close to many commercial areas and is home to many working class people. As a result, property in this district is cheaper than most.

Church Point in Virginia Beach is one of the oldest parts of the city and is a mainly residential area for families. Properties available are mainly single family homes and prices are reasonable when compared to similar districts in other cities.

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