There goes the gayborhood.
As Bloomberg is reporting, a new study has revealed an economic benefit to those who support gay marriage and other lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community causes, as the presence of same-sex couples may actually lift property values in neighborhoods.
Although this may come to no surprise to those in larger cities, where LGBT people have long been known to help gentrify neighborhoods, a "finer distinction" was explored in the survey, which appears in the Journal of Urban Economics and was conducted by professors David Christafore of Konkuk University in Seoul and Susane Leguizamon of Tulane University in New Orleans:
The economics professors, who studied home values in 2000 in and around Columbus, Ohio, concluded that an increase in the number of same-sex couples by one in 1,000 households is associated with a 1.1 percent price premium in enclaves that backed gay marriage. The same influx in areas that didn’t support same-sex marriage was linked to a 1 percent discount.
Leguizamon and Christafore used voting data from the U.S. Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, along with census information to determine the number of LGBT couples in the area, the National Post notes. "Gays and lesbians feel that they’re not welcome in certain areas," Leguizamon is quoted as saying. "This study suggests it's not just a feeling; people are responding to the presence of gays and lesbians in the ways we'd expect."
Authors reportedly used home prices from 2000 in an effort to avoid the complications of the housing bust, which started in 2006, causing some demographers to consider whether or not the results would have been different if more current values were used.