Homes near public transportation suffered less in recession


If you live in New York, you want to be near the subway. In Connecticut, not too far from the train station.

subway train

Those aren’t just the wishes of foot-weary commuters. They’re also a big factor to consider in homeownership – and one that gives property considerably more value, according to a new study.

Homes located closer to public transportation have fared much better during the housing crisis than those that aren’t. In fact, nearly 42 percent better, according to a new study by the Center for Neighborhood Technology. As housing prices declined from 2006 to 2011, homes located within a half mile of public transportation outperformed homes located outside that area by 41.6 percent.

Within regions, homes close to heavy rail, light rail and bus rapid transit held their values best. Those areas also tended to be more walkable and have better access to jobs.

Earlier studies showed that housing located near public transportation in urban areas held their values better and were priced 4 to 14 percent higher than similar housing located farther from public transportation. The type of residential property doesn’t make a difference, the studies have consistently found.

The city that showed the greatest percentage change in average residential sales price based on the proximity of real estate to public transportation was Boston, where weekly ridership of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority rails, buses and ferries is more than 1.3 million. Areas near transportation lines surpassed the region by an astounding 129 percent.

Coming in a far second was Minneapolis/St. Paul, where residences near transportation lines outperformed other properties by 48 percent.