|Having a power plant near your home usually hurts sales value. One study shows home values within two miles of a power plant can decrease between 4% and 7%.|
The data are fairly clear on the impact of power plants on nearby home values -- it usually hurts them. A study from the University of California at Berkeley shows that home values within two miles of a power plant can decrease between 4% and 7%. Landfills.
A study from the Pima County (Arizona) Assessor's office shows that a subdivision near a landfill (and all other residential factors being equal, including house size, school quality and residential incomes) loses 6% to 10% in value compared with a subdivision that isn't near a dump.
Living in close proximity to a registered sex offender is one of the biggest downward drivers of home values. Researchers at Longwood University's College of Business & Economics conclude that the closer you live to a sex offender, the more your home will depreciate. In the paper, Estimating the Effect of Crime Risk on Property Values and Time on Market: Evidence from Megan's Law in Virginia, Longwood researchers say, "the presence of a registered sex offender living within one-tenth of a mile reduces home values by about 9%, and these same homes take as much as 10% longer to sell than homes not located near registered sex offenders."
Delinquent bill payers.
One surprising way neighbors can bring down the value of surrounding homes, especially in town home or condo communities, is by not paying their maintenance fees or mortgages. "Bad neighbors bring values down by not paying their maintenance fees, in some cases their mortgage payments, and not maintaining the home's appearance," Pordes says. "These homeowners usually do not care about real estate values." Foreclosed homes.
Perhaps the biggest single factor that drives nearby home values down is a foreclosure. A recent study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology concludes that a neighbor's foreclosed home can slash the value of homes within 250 feet of the foreclosed properties by an average of 27%. Says Federal Reserve Governor Joseph Tracy recently in his economic outlook for 2011: "The growing inventory of defaulted mortgages continues to weigh down any recovery in the housing market ... Problems in housing markets can impact economic growth." Lackluster landscaping.
Studies show that lawn care has a big impact on surrounding home values. Virginia Tech University released a report stating that pristine landscaping can jack up the value of a home by 5% to 10%. But if the lawn looks like it just hosted the world rugby tournament, it can be a green thumb to the eye of local home prices. Closed schools.
Sometimes, neighborhood problems can stem from local government action. For example, if a cash-strapped city or town closes a neighborhood school, that can easily steer home values south. The National Association of Realtors says 75% of home shoppers feel the quality and availability of schools in the neighborhood is either "somewhat important" or "very important."
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