The Impact of Supportive Housing on Surrounding Neighborhoods: Evidence from New York City

Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy , New York University

November 2008

While studies have shown that supportive housing plays a critical role in helping to address
homelessness, little research has focused on the impact of supportive housing on the neighborhood. 
Residents often resist proposed supportive housing developments in their community, expressing
fears that the housing will have a negative impact on the neighborhood.  This study looks at the impacts of supportive housing on property values, examining the impact of 123 developments across the city’s five boroughs over an 18 year period.  Using sales data provided by the NYC Department of Finance, the Furman Center compared the prices of properties within 500 feet and 1,000 feet rings around a supportive housing development to similar properties in the same census tract but more than 1,000 feet away, before and after the supportive housing opens. By controlling for differences between the prices of the properties near supportive housing sites and those further away before the new development is completed, the study isolates the real impact of the supportive housing on the neighborhood.
The findings show that the value of properties within 500 feet of supportive housing do not drop when a new development opens and show steady growth relative to other properties in the neighborhood in the years after the supportive housing opens. Properties somewhat further away from the supportive housing (between 500 and 1,000 feet away) show a decline in value when the supportive housing first opens, but their prices then increase steadily relative to other properties in the neighborhood.

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