10 Things You Didn’t Know Could Decrease Your Property’s Value

6 min read
Property Value

Don’t let your home value drop. Protect yourself now and avoid these things that could decrease your property’s value.

10. Close Proximity to Certain Businesses and Facilities

Power Plant
Source: Pixabay

Believe it or not, living near certain businesses and facilities can bring property values down. These businesses and facilities include bad schools, strip clubs, homeless shelters, hospitals, funeral homes, cemeteries, shooting ranges, and power plants. And, living near a bad school is the absolute worst. It can bring property values down by as much as 22.2 percent! On the other hand, living near a hospital isn’t too bad. Doing so will only bring property values down 3.2 percent. Still, it does drag down the value nonetheless, so you should avoid living near one if possible.

9. Bad Neighbors

Bad Neighbor
Source: Pixabay

Living near bad neighbors doesn’t just affect your mood. It can also affect your property values. So, if you live near people with junky yards or loud dogs, or those who like to throw wild parties, you may want to have a chat with them about how their behavior is impacting everyone in the neighborhood, including themselves. Here’s something else: living by a registered sex offender can also drag down property values. That being said, you can always do a quick search on the National Sex Offender Public Website to see if any of your neighbors fit into that category.

8. Neighborhood Foreclosures

Source: Wikimedia Commons By respres / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)

Foreclosures aren’t just bad for the homeowner. They’re bad for the entire neighborhood! That’s because appraisers not only look at your home when estimating its value, they also look at comparable selling prices in your neighborhood. Not only that, but foreclosed homes can potentially turn into vacant homes that go without any maintenance for a long time. And, that isn’t good for your property value either. So, if you’re in the market for a new home, make sure to avoid any areas that have a lot of foreclosures.

7. Abandoned Houses

Abandoned House
Source: Pixabay

According to GOBankingRates, Mary Case Friedner, a real estate broker serving the Hudson River towns of Westchester County, New York, says that zombie houses (a.k.a. abandoned houses) “can really hurt the value of neighboring homes.” In fact, an article published by CheatSheet.com says that abandoned homes cause nearby homes to lose 3 percent to 5 percent of their value. Thankfully, there are groups that have formed in various cities whose primary goal is to reduce the number of abandoned homes. For example, a group informally known as the “zombie homes coalition” began forming in 2018 after the City of Spokane spotlighted the issue of abandoned homes in a video on its website. In August 2019, the group went through a training program offered through the National Association of Realtors. “Some of the best ideas that came out of that (August training program) were things like making sure the county talks with nonprofits,” Spokane Association of Realtors government affairs director Darin Watkins told the Spokane Journal of Business. “The county has launched a program through which you can get help with your property taxes — the nonprofits didn’t know about that.”

“The county could help transfer some of these homes that don’t really have any owners or any issues into the possession of the county, then find nonprofits to rehabilitate those homes and get them back on the market,” he added.

6. Cracks in the Pavement

Cracked Pavement
Source: Pixabay

Now, when we say that cracks in the pavement can drive down property values, we’re not talking about the pavement on the road or sidewalk in front of your home. We’re talking about your driveway. If you have gravel in your driveway, then this message isn’t for you. But, if you have a paved driveway, you’ll want to make sure you deal with any cracks on it right away. That’s because cracks in a paved driveway is a sign of physical depreciation to appraisers. But, it’s not just cracks. According to GOBankingRates, Adrian Muller, president of Hudson View Appraisal Services, says that large potholes on the driveway surface can also “raise a red flag in the appraisal process.”

5. Fracking

Shale Gas Fracking
Source: Pixabay

According to a study conducted by economists from Duke University and the nonprofit research institution Resources for the Future, the property values of homes located near shale gas wells can take a huge hit. For example, homeowners in Pennsylvania who used well water for consumption lost an average of $30,000+ of their property’s value if they lived within 1 1/4 miles of a shale drilling! “Our results show clearly that housing markets are responding to homeowners’ concerns about groundwater contamination from shale gas development,” Christopher Timmins, a Duke economics professor who specializes in environmental economics, and lead author in the study, told the Triangle Business Journal. “We may not know for many years whether these concerns are valid or not. However, they are creating a real cost to property owners today.”

4. Street Traffic

Street Traffic
Source: Pixabay

The type of street you live on could negatively impact your property’s value. For example, houses that are on busy streets generally have less value than the same houses on more quiet streets.

TIP: Homes located on a two-lane road with a double yellow line is “an indication that there is more traffic, and it’s not typical of just a neighborhood,” Roberta Parker, a real estate agent for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox & Roach, Realtors in Princeton, New Jersey, told U.S. News & World Report. “A double yellow line is a serious road.”

3. The Address Suffix

Street Signs
Source: Wikimedia Commons By brewbooks from near Seattle, USA / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

Did you know that your address suffix could negatively impact your property’s value? Yep, it’s true. According to an article published by Reader’s Digest, address suffixes with lower property values include drive, street, and avenue. And, if you have an address that’s similar to one mentioned in a horror film — Elm Street for example — you’ll get less money when you sell your home than you would if your home was located at a different address, even if that address is only slightly different (e.g. Elm Street vs. Elm Road).

2. Billboards

Source: Pixabay

Got a billboard in your backyard? If you do you could risk losing tens of thousands of dollars off your home’s value. That’s according to a 2010 study of properties in Philadelphia. According to the study, homes that were located with 500 feet of a billboard were worth $30,826 less than similar properties. But, it’s not just having a billboard in your backyard that could cause your property’s value to decrease. Just having one in the neighborhood can drive property values down. Not only that but each additional billboard in a census tract reduces home values by $947.

1. Noise Pollution

Noise Pollution
Source: Pixabay

A noisy neighborhood isn’t just annoying, it can actually be quite costly. That’s because noise pollution can negatively affect property prices. “The presence of an airport could cause properties in near proximity to sell up to 20 percent lower than the average of homes in the next concentric circle,” Tom Davies, Co-Founder and Manager of the property buying company Accelerate Homes, told Realtor.com. Generally speaking, the quieter an area is the more desirable it will be deemed. Of course that’s not always the case, as you can see from the fact that some of the most expensive homes in New York City are located in busy midtown Manhattan. But, generally speaking, the quieter the better.


Looking for more ways to protect your home’s value? Avoid these home renovations that are a waste of money.