Furman Center study shows supportive housing does not negatively impact surrounding property values

NYU’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy released the first large-scale study of the property value impacts of supportive housing, evaluating the impacts that 123 developments across the city's five boroughs have had over an 18-year period. Supportive housing is a type of affordable housing that provides on-site services to people who may need support to live independently (including former homeless individuals and families, people with HIV and AIDS or physical disabilities, young people aging out of foster care, ex-offenders, people with mental illness or individuals with a history of substance abuse). 

These new findings refute frequently asserted fears that supportive housing developments will depress the value of neighboring properties over time. 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.

“While studies have shown that supportive housing plays a critical role in helping to address the problem of homelessness, before our study, little was known about the impact that supportive housing has on the neighborhood,” said Vicki Been, Elihu Root Professor of Law and Professor of Public Policy and director of the Furman Center. “Neighbors often resist proposed supportive housing developments in their community, expressing fears that the housing will have a negative impact on the neighborhood, but the Furman Center thought it was important to look at this question empirically to see what the real impacts have been over time.”

Read The New York Times editorial about the study

Read the Furman Center study, "The Impact of Supportive Housing on Surrounding Neighborhoods: Evidence from New York City"