Documents filed under Property Values
When considering local bylaws regulating wind turbine development, towns need to consider whether and to what degree they should be encouraged. The question of how much revenue they might generate for the town will be among the first issues raised. To determine this, there are many things a town with land suitable for commercial wind development needs to consider. Particular attention needs to be paid to long-term trends as well. This paper explores some of these factors and their implications.
Jon Boone is a intervenor in a Maryland Public Service Commission windpower case (No. 9008). On September 16, 2005, he formally submitted his direct testimony in this case. His testimony and attachments cover the gamut of issues surrounding the wind industry.
Jon Boone's response, published in The Caledonian Record in August 2005, to those who challenged the authenticity of his DVD "Life Under a Windplant".
"Is the 'jury' still out on the impact of WTGs on property value? Yes, though there does appear to be several indications that a loss in value to neighboring properties is a real possibility."
Q. Even considering all of those factors or weaknesses, what is your conclusion regarding the impact on residential property values from the proposed project? A. Under certain circumstances as described in my report, the negative impact may be similar. Also, in significant view loss situations, as described in my report, I would conclude that, within a reasonable degree of professional certainty, land values may be negatively impacted 17% - 20%. Editor's Note: Mr. Zarem argues that the appropriate methodology for estimating the 'view' impact of industrial wind turbines on property values is 'paired data analysis'- defined in the The Dictionary of Real Estate Appraisal as: “A quantitative technique used to identify and measure adjustments to the sale prices or rents of comparable properties; to apply this technique, sales or rental data on nearly identical properties are analyzed to isolate a single characteristic’s effect on value or rent.” In the absence of relevant view/turbine data, he derived an alternative paired data analysis for determining view impacts on property values due to wind turbines from Transmission Line view impacts on the prices of single-family residential lots in subdivisions...as...sufficient paired data isolating the effects of view loss due to Transmission Lines exist in the marketplace to reach reasonable conclusions as to market tendencies. This data isolates impacts due to view loss associated with Transmission Lines.
BBC Research & Consulting's 2005 report for the National Wind Coordinating Committee that studies 9 wind plant sitings in an effort to identify circumstances that distinguish welcomed projects from projects that were not accepted by communities.
The Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University has studied the Cape Wind proposal in considerable detail, and offers the following comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) Reference file no. NAE-2004-338-
The Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University has studied the Cape Wind proposal in considerable detail, and offers the following comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) Reference file no. NAE-2004-338-1: 1. A systematic cost-benefit analysis – missing from the DEIS – shows that, with 90% confidence, the costs of the project outweigh the benefits by between $83 million and $333 million, with a mean measure of net cost of $209 million (equivalent to 2.0 cents/kWh produced). 2. The DEIS conclusion of “no adverse impacts to tourism and recreation” is not supported by the data. 3. The DEIS conclusion that the project would not adversely affect property values is based on a flawed study, ignores other research, and is untenable. 4. The DEIS estimates of the value of health improvements are greatly exaggerated (at $53 million annually). Our own estimates show health improvements of $7 million, and even this may be overstated.
It is noteworthy that this study does not answer the basic question of how wind turbines affect property values. George Sterzinger, executive director of REPP, admitted as much in response to critics who stressed that the study contains no proof that wind farms were the reason for the changes in property values: “ We have no idea”…noting REPP did not have enough time or money to answer that question. (Cape Cod Times 6/20/03).
Written by Douglas Giuffre, Jonathan Haughton, David Tuerck and John Barrett, this report analyses in economic terms the costs and benefits of a proposed 130 turbine wind plant in Nantucket Sound. It concludes that the economic costs substantially exceed the associated economic gains. This is a follow-up study to one published by Beacon Hill in October 2003 entitled "Blowing in the Wind: Offshore Wind and the Cape Cod Economy"
Researched and written by Eleanor Tillinghast of Green Berkshires Inc. this is a comprehensive study of the probable impact of industrial wind plants on the rural character, quality-of-life and economy of the Berkshires in western Massachusetts. Specific issues addressed include visual aesthetics, tourism, property values, public roads and public safety.
I have reviewed Beacon Hill’s two reports, i.e. 'Free But Costly: An Economic Analysis of A Wind Farm in Nantucket Sound" (March 2004) and ‘Blowing in the Wind' (October 2003) which focused primarily on tourism and property values. The complete reports are available from www.beaconhill.org. The following consists of two parts. Part I addresses some key findings as well as some thoughts on methodology. Part II focuses on what may or may not be applicable to Glebe.
Executive Summary -60% of the sample suggested that wind farms decrease the value of residential properties where the development is within view -67% of the sample indicated that the negative impact on property prices starts when a planning application to erect a wind farm is made -The main factors cited for the negative impact on property values are: o visual impact of wind farm after completion o fear of blight o the proximity of a property to a wind farm -Once a wind farm is completed, the negative impact on property values continues but becomes less severe after two years or so after completion ..... -The survey suggests that wind farms do not impact on residential property values in a uniform way. The circumstances of each development can be different -This report points to a need for further research to track the impact of wind farms and to examine in particular whether the nature of any adverse impact diminishes as wind farms become an increasingly familiar part of the rural scene.
Q. In your experience, do adjacent land uses affect property values? A. Yes. It's been my experience property values are directly affected by neighboring land uses. For example, property uses that create noise, light, glare, and other such nuisances often negatively affect property values.
This letter, written by Tom Hewson, responds to a New York State resident who had inquired about the impact of industrial wind turbines on property values. The letter specifically critiques the REPP study. It provides as well an overview of other studies that existed as of Fall 2003. "The issue simply comes down to nuisance and aesthetics. If the project creates a nuisance (noise, shadow flicker, TV/cell phone interference, radar interference), it can cause lower property values to adversely affected areas. People can simply apply their own personal evaluation criteria to determine the extent of the property change. What would it be worth to you? Generally, the bigger the nuisance, the larger the devaluation. Localities can minimize nuisances from wind projects by setting minimum setbacks, proper location siting and noise limits. My concern with the REPP study is that it doesn't try to examine the nuisance effect by selecting a large 5 mile area."
Written by Jonathan Haughton, Douglas Giuffre and John Barrett, this report addresses the prospective impact on the Cape Cod economy of 130 wind turbines in Nantucket Sound. The study includes the responses of tourists and residents to the aesthetics of the proposed project as well as the result of a survey among tourists on the degree to which the project would influence their desire to visit the area. The authors conclude that 'caution' is in order. A follow-up study entitled "Free but Costly" An Economic Analysis of a Wind Farm in Nantucket Sound" was published in March 2004.
This is the study by Renewable Energy Policy Project (REPP) that is often pointed to by wind developers as evidence that industrial wind turbines do not adversely impact property values. Its methodology has been widely discredited. Hoen's critique is of particular interest and is included below. Hoen's own study of Fenner is available via the link provided at the end of Hoen's comments.
Study Objectives Primary Analysis Questions: 1) Determine effect of wind turbines on residential property values 2) Determine economic impacts to local economy 3) Estimate new tax revenues for Kittitas County from proposed wind farm. This study along with the REPP study are the two most often cited by wind developers to support their claim that industrial windplants do not adversely affect property values.