Gated Communities and House Prices: Suburban Change in Southern California, 1980-2008.

Abstract : Housing prices being one factor thought to contribute to segregation patterns, this paper aims at differentiating gated communities from non-gated communities in terms of change in property values. To what extent do gated communities contribute to price filtering of residents, accentuated by patterns of price differentiation favoring gated communities in the long run? The paper provides an analysis of the territorial nature of gated communities and how the private urban governance realm theoretically sustains the hypothesis of better protection of property values in gated communities. In order to identify price patterns across time, we elaborate a spatial analysis of values (Price Distance Index), identifying gated communities with real-estate listings in 2008, matched with historical data at the normalized census tract level from Census 1980, 1990 and 2000, in the greater Los Angeles region. We conclude that gated communities are very diverse in kind. The wealthier the area, the more they contribute to fuel price growth, especially in the most desired locations in the region. Furthermore, a dual behavior emerges in areas with an over-representation of gated communities. On the one hand, GCs are located in local contexts that introduce greater heterogeneity and instability in price patterns, and by doing so contribute to a local increase of price inequality that destabilizes the price patterns at neighborhood level. On the other hand, GCs spread in contexts that show a very strong stability, in terms of producing price homogeneity at the local level.
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Renaud Le Goix, Elena Vesselinov. Gated Communities and House Prices: Suburban Change in Southern California, 1980-2008.. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley, 2013, 37 (6), pp.2129-2151. ⟨10.1111/j.1468-2427.2012.01139.x⟩. ⟨hal-00519725v2⟩

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