Chicago Home Value: The Role of “Proximity”

When it comes to real estate, we all know the golden rule – location, location, location!  So, it should come as no surprise that what really affects a home’s value more than anything else is your proximity to certain places and amenities.

Let’s take a look at some key factors that can help or hurt your home depending on their proximity and gain a better understanding of just how important this is to your home’s value:

Quick Stats

Your home’s nearness to certain places, people and amenities plays a huge role in determining its overall value, whether for the better or worse.  Here are some quick stats to help draw a better picture:

Proximity Benefits

A home’s value can be elevated by many factors, including:

  • Being within walking distance of light rail transit can boost your home value by 17%.
  • Being near public transportation stops (in general) can raise your home’s value by as much as 41%.
  • 21% of buyers will pay more to be closer to more desirable schools and districts for their kids.
  • If your home is within a quarter of a mile of a Starbucks, your home value can increase by 21%.
  • If your home is located near a Dunkin Donuts, it can boost your home’s value by 15%.
  • In general, buyers seek properties that are closer to shopping and community activities.

Proximity Pitfalls

As wonderful as all of the above-mentioned things are that can boost home’s value, there are a lot more factors that could actually work against your property’s worth.  Some of these pitfalls include:

  • Being near a garbage dump can lower your home’s value by 5-7%.
  • Being near a power plant can hurt your home’s value by about 4-7%.
  • Any threat of fracking can devastate your home’s value.  So, if you live near a shale gas well, it can hurt your home’s value by as much as 24%.
  • Living near a foreclosed lot or abandoned home can lower your home’s value by as much as $7,200.
  • Living near a sinkhole or even just a tacky billboard can hurt your home’s value up to 30% or cost you up to $30 thousand.
  • Being near certain people can be damaging to your home’s value.  If your home is located near loud neighbors or neighbors who don’t maintain their lots, it can lower your home’s value anywhere from 5-10%.
  • Living in the same neighborhood as a registered sex offender or felon can lower your home’s value by about 12%.
  • Some other factors working against your home’s value include living near a busy highway, loud railroad tracks, or telephone poles.

While your home’s value, of course, depends on your care and upkeep, it’s also dependent on many external factors, which often aren’t always exactly fair.  But, it’s not where you live, but what’s next door to where you live that ultimately affects your home value. So, before you go to market with your home or decide to purchase your own, consider the location and its proximity to both the benefits and the pitfalls.  


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