Does Walkability Affect Home Values?
Posted by Jamie Russen on
When potential home buyers are surveyed about the amenities and features they most desire in their new home and neighborhood, walkability is often high on the list. Having a house within walking distance to parks, shops, restaurants, schools and jobs is consistently coveted by buyers but not all that commonly found. In fact, a recent analysis found less than 2 percent of active listings had a Walk Score of 90 or higher. So, if walkability is so rare, does it affect a home's price? In short, yes. The data showed an average increase of $3,250 per Walk Score point, though the effect was more pronounced in some areas than others. For example, in San Francisco a more walkable neighborhood increased a comparable home's value by $187,630, while in Phoenix a similar increase in walkability only added $15,700 in value. There was even one area where proximity to businesses and services wasn't a boost to home values. In Orange County, Calif., a walkable neighborhood had little to no effect on values due to a preference for privacy. Still, with 46 percent of older buyers and 56 percent of Millennials saying they'd prefer to buy in a walkable community, these homes – if you can find one – will more than likely be selling at a premium.