I live in a pretty nice condo in a growing area. There are several open fields around my neighborhood, and the city has decided to build "affordable housing" apartments directly outside the perimeter which is actually across the street from my condo.

Is affordable housing being added across the street from my condo likely to decrease my condo's value?

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    No problem with the real estate. Re: "If you were me [...]" ... there are votes to close your question as "Primarily opinion-based", i.e. "Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise." I'd get rid of the "If you were me" part, at the very least, and try and ask about more objective criteria that you could consider. – Chris W. Rea Apr 2 '15 at 20:02
  • The question is extremely specific to Austin, TX which may be a place some of us don't know well at all. Real-estate questions can be more general if you've looked on the site to see other questions. – JB King Apr 2 '15 at 20:04
  • I will make the question more general and objective, as you suggest, then. I would, however, appreciate some thoughts on this. – Chad Johnson Apr 2 '15 at 20:08
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    It really depends on the local definition of affordable (it can range from flat-broke to almost-average-income), the current character of the community, exactly what population that housing draws, the biases of each potential buyer, phase of the moon... – keshlam Apr 2 '15 at 20:34
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    To highlight one resource linked through the answer below, I find this synthesis brief and to the point: stardust.asu.edu/docs/stardust/housing-research-synthesis/… You can skim it in 5-10 minutes and get a well-rounded perspective on the issue. Bottom line: "There is no single, unqualified answer to whether or not introducing affordable housing lowers property values of surrounding homes. Rather it depends on a host of contextual conditions: of site, host community, scale and other external factors." Read on for factor summaries! – A.S Apr 3 '15 at 13:18

No, it's not: "Most studies indicate that affordable housing has no long term negative impact on surrounding home values. In fact, some research indicates the opposite!"


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  • So, you would move there? – AbraCadaver May 13 '15 at 18:36
  • I would have no objection to housing near me being converted to low-income housing. I wouldn't move there for reasons wholly unrelated to the low-income housing. – David Rice May 14 '15 at 15:18

It depends on who moves in to the affordable housing.

I grew up in a small town that had one public housing project. The residents in the "White Apartments" were uniformly some of the most conscientious, civic-minded people you could ever meet. Their children included valedictorians and perfect-attendance award winners at school.

On the other hand, I once lived for a year across the street from a public housing project in Boston. There often were sirens. According to the police, it was "the largest open-air heroin market on the East Coast", at least until they arrested the drug dealers in a huge bust.

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