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How Public Transportation Benefits Home Prices

A study by the American Public Transportation Association(APTA) found that neighborhoods located within a half-mile of public transit have a higher average sales price. 

The report, published by the National Association of Realtors, studies seven metros—Boston, Massachusetts; Hartford, Connecticut; Los Angeles, California; Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota; Phoenix, Arizona, and Eugene, Oregon. It found that that residential areas near rail stations and bus transit had a 4-24% higher median-sales price between 2012 and 2016.

“Public transit’s benefits go beyond moving people from point A to point B,” said APTA President and CEO Paul P. Skoutelas. “Public transportation is a valuable investment in our communities, our businesses, and our country. Public transportation gets people to jobs and educational opportunities and helps businesses attract employees and customers.”

Transportation costs in transit-oriented areas are lower than in other regions. The average savings are reported to by $2,500-$4,400 for the typical household. The report states that one in four households close to transit do not own a vehicle. 

Trulia reported earlier this year that New York had the fewest people-per-vehicle ratio of any metro in the nation, with one car for every 12.58 people. 

San Francisco, California, and the San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland metro market, had the second highest ratio, with 5.03 people-per-vehicle. The Boston-Worcester-Providence metro market followed with 4.60 people-per-vehicle.

“Access to public transportation is an extremely valuable community amenity that increases the functionality and attractiveness of neighborhoods, making nearby communities more desirable places to live, work and raise a family,” said NAR 2019 First VP Charlie Oppler, who spoke at Monday’s press conference, along with 2019 New York State Association of Realtors President Moses Seuram. “The results of our report, conducted over multiple years alongside the American Public Transportation Association, should reiterate to policymakers at all levels of government the importance of investing in modern, efficient infrastructure that facilitates growth and helps our nation keep pace in a rapidly evolving world.”

The NAR states that neighborhoods with high-frequency public transportation are in high demand. However, the increasing demand for housing new public transportation has resulted in constrained housing supplies. 

“As the conversation surrounding housing affordability continues, public transportation agencies are critical allies in working with elected officials and community leaders in the effort to increase housing opportunities and maximize value around stations,” Skoutelas said.

About Author: Mike Albanese

A graduate of the University of Alabama, Mike Albanese has worked for news publications since 2011 in Texas and Colorado. He has built a portfolio of more than 1,000 articles, covering city government, police and crime, business, sports, and is experienced in crafting engaging features and enterprise pieces. He spent time as the sports editor for the "Pilot Point Post-Signal," and has covered the DFW Metroplex for several years. He has also assisted with sports coverage and editing duties with the "Dallas Morning News" and "Denton Record-Chronicle" over the past several years.
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