Living near a Metra station is not only convenient for commuters, but it also raises property values, a new study reports.
Data in the study released by the American Public Transportation Association and the National Association of Realtors reveal that during the last recession, residential property values performed 42 percent better on average if they were located near public transportation with high-frequency service, the realtors' and public transit associations said in a statement.
The reasons? Access to more jobs and a cheaper, often shorter, commute.
"When homes are located near public transportation, they are among the most valuable and desirable in the area," said APTA President and CEO Michael Melaniphy.
"This study shows that consumers are choosing neighborhoods with high-frequency public transportation because it provides access to up to five times as many jobs per square mile as compared to other areas in a given region. Other attractive amenities in these neighborhoods include lower transportation costs, walkable areas and robust transportation choices."
Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said in a statement he agreed.
"Transportation plays an important role in real estate and housing decisions, and the data suggests that residential real-estate near public transit will remain attractive to buyers going forward," he said.
The following information comes from the associations' statement:
The study, The New Real-Estate Mantra: Location near Public Transportation, investigates how well residential properties located in a half-mile proximity to high-frequency public transportation, or in the "public transit shed" have performed in holding their value during the recession compared to other properties in a given region.
While residential property values declined substantially between 2006 to 2011, properties close to public transit showed significantly stronger resiliency. The following are a few examples from the study: In Boston, residential property in the rapid transit area outperformed other properties in the region by an incredible 129 percent. In the Chicago public transit area home values performed 30 percent better than the region; in San Francisco, 37 percent; Minneapolis-St Paul, 48 percent; and in Phoenix 37 percent.
The study looked at five regions, which illustrate the types of high-frequency public transit systems throughout the U.S. High-frequency public transportation includes subway (heavy rail), light rail and bus rapid transit. This sample accurately projects the nationwide average (42 percent) variance among properties located near high-frequency public transportation and those that are located further away from public transit.