LRT: How do transit and walk scores affect home values? 

transit and walk score

I recently read that one of the reasons for our housing shortage in Waterloo Region is that people who live along the LRT line are waiting until it opens before they sell. I suppose if that were true, they would be thinking that they will get more money for their homes once the LRT is in daily operation.

 

There are two things wrong with that idea:

First of all, I don’t think it is true that anyone is waiting for the LRT to open before selling. I haven’t heard that anywhere or from anyone.

Second, if anyone believes the studies I referenced  in this blog post from 2013, they would know what the experts know. The value of real estate near mass rapid transit increases in the 18 months before it’s opening and then actually falls a little afterwards, supposedly when people realize that it didn’t really effect their lives.

 

Good Score = Good Price

But there is a lot of evidence that having a high transit score and/or a high walk score is good for your home’s value.

Is it causation or correlation?

It does not matter. It is what it is.

A recent study that looked at 14 American metro areas found that one Transit Score point could increase the price of a home by as much as more than $2,000. Similarly, the Walk Score study found that one Walk Score point could translate into adding as much as over $4000 to the price of a home. On average, one Walk Score point adds $3,250 to the price of a home.

And, it is true that the newly wed and the nearly dead like to be in the thick of things. Walkability and access to good transit is important to the so called millennials and the boomers, at least they say it is.

 

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