It's overlooked how much property values are impacted by property taxes and homeowner's insurance rates. For example, a $600k house in Houston or $640k house in Miami has roughly the same monthly cost (assuming 20% down payment) as a $735k home in Los Angeles. ImageImageImage
Utilities also probably play a meaningful role, though I don't know how the costs compare between cities. I assume Houston has the highest utility bills and LA the lowest (at least within 5-10 miles of the coast), but could be wrong.
I'd always been aware of this with respect to property tax rates, but this @CityObs article got me thinking about the insurance side of things. Look at that annual premium in the Miami metro! Almost $1,000 per month!… Image

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More from @ShaneDPhillips

20 Aug
Despite being extremely tame by European standards, this design feels very "busy" for the US. And that's good! It's underappreciated how much a sort of messy / overwhelming street design can improve safety. People generally drive more safely in uncertain conditions.
Note: I'm not a traffic engineer and I'm sure there are cases where this doesn't hold true, where "busy" or "messy" designs make things more dangerous. But roundabouts are a good example: lots of people find them unpleasant or uncomfortable, but they're quite safe as a result.
I guess what I'm saying is, more lines on pavement please.
Read 4 tweets
20 Aug
i like this tho
this is also a pretty good example, IMO, of giving the impression of separate buildings without actually separating them
Read 4 tweets
20 Aug
Governments regulate housing markets, and some places have much worse outcomes than others. I really don't understand how some people, often those living in places with the worst outcomes, have so much faith that increased govt control of housing will lead to something better.
Personally, I think the government should play a bigger role in the housing market. I believe in the power of govt to do good things. But if your govt can't even regulate the market for somewhat better outcomes, why assume it can take far more responsibility and be successful?
If you believe government should do more to intervene in the housing market, awesome, me too. If you think we shouldn't bother trying to improve outcomes that the market can deliver on, and has in other places and other times, or that it's somehow counterproductive... nah.
Read 4 tweets
18 Aug
The latest UCLA Housing Voice Podcast episode is out—give it a listen & subscribe! This time we interview @planning_mkim about different approaches to value capture, a really important topic with a lot of nuance to explore. This was a fun one.…
The paper we focus on is titled "Negotiation or Schedule-Based? Examining the Strengths and Weaknesses of the Public Benefit Exaction Strategies of Boston and Seattle," which can be found here:…
A while back, I summarized some interesting charts and passages from the paper in the thread linked below. We also always provide key takeaways and passages from the papers we discuss on our website, linked in the first tweet.
Read 16 tweets
29 Jan
Yet another case of a property owner filing a development application and having someone maliciously file a historic preservation application on their behalf, against their will. This time, a former Chili Bowl of such great historic value that it's currently a sushi restaurant.
The opening to this letter is pretty 🔥🔥 though.…
This case is being heard at PLUM Committee on February 4th:…
Read 8 tweets
28 Jan
I have a new paper at the @UCLALewisCenter! This one's pretty wonky, but I hope it helps illuminate how the timing of fees and other development costs really matters — a dollar paid today is very different from a dollar paid 3 or 5 years from now.…
The gist of the paper is this: Many development fees are paid early, at building permit issuance, with equity or debt. By the time devs recoup that expense they might be paying back 150% of that amount to their investors or lenders. This makes it more expensive to build housing.
I should note that, in general, this applies to for-profit as well as non-profit developers.
Read 8 tweets

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