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Thread: Help a graduate student!

  1. #1
    Cyburbian ricepg's avatar
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    Help a graduate student!

    I am new to this board so I hope that I am posting in an OK place. I recently got my thesis topic approved and am looking for some help. I am looking at the fiscal aspect of gentrification in a neighborhood of approxmitly 200 homes - basically what does gentrification contribute to the tax base. The problem that I face is that I am looking for a way to to distinguish homes in the neighborhood that have undergone gentrification from those that have not by using a set of criteria that typically defines gentrification. The "non-gentrified" homes would represent a control group to be compared to the gentrified group. So far I have some ideas but am interested in any helpful ideas that you may have. Also if you have seen or heard of any atricles or papers on a similar study. I haved begun looking through the urban/planning/geography/economics journals.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Welcome to the board! I cannot help with your question, but please take the time to post a little information in the "Introduce Yourself" board. Folks seem to get better responses if they do that before asking questions. This is a good resource, I am sure someone will be able to help you out.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    I had a class in real estate appraisal. I am wondering if you have such a class in your background. If not, get a good basic book on real estate appraisal. An appraisal is "an estimate of value". They use a lot of criteria for determining the estimate of value. The obvious ones that everyone knows about, such as square footage, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, etc. are not necessarily the most important ones. For example, in some towns in the county I live in, a pool adds value. In others, it doesn't. It basically comes down to "how hot is it in the summer?" The "neighborhood" also matters a great deal and defining the boundaries of a neighborhood can be tricky.

    You also might consider calling a local appraiser and talk to them. Appraisers are really rather sharp. You might find one to be a wealth of information about exactly what causes value to go up dramatically in that specific neighborhood. He/she might save you a whole lot of time and research. They also probably can give you the names and numbers of who to call to get specific kinds of info the quick and easy way rather than spending hours and hours digging around in some government records room. If you make it very clear that you are a student, doing this for your thesis and not in any way a competitor, and ask nicely, appraisers know some astonishing things...but tend to play their cards close to their chest, as I understand it.

    Oh, and like he said, "Welcome aboard".

  4. #4
    Cyburbian ricepg's avatar
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    Thank you both for your advise. I look foward to using this board often

  5. #5
          Downtown's avatar
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    There must be someway to get a baseline average appraisal value for the neighborhood before the gentrification occurred and then the "Gentrified" home would be houses that have exceeded a certain percentage increase in value over a period of time?

    Very interesting.

    Out of curiousity - Are you a Clemson MCRP student?

  6. #6
    Cyburbian ricepg's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Downtown
    There must be someway to get a baseline average appraisal value for the neighborhood before the gentrification occurred and then the "Gentrified" home would be houses that have exceeded a certain percentage increase in value over a period of time?

    Very interesting.

    Out of curiousity - Are you a Clemson MCRP student?
    No not at Clemson. I am a USC goegraphy student. Also for my thesis I am trying to stay away from criteria based on home value. The reason for this is that I am going to ultimatly compare the percentage of tax revenue increase from the gentrified and non-gentrified catagories. So basing the two catagories directly on home value or appraisals would skew my numbers. I am thinking of using critreria such as homes with no children, age of owners, amount of turnover, etc. to determine whether or not a home is gentrified.

  7. #7
    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by ricepg
    I am thinking of using critreria such as homes with no children, age of owners, amount of turnover, etc. to determine whether or not a home is gentrified.
    If I were to do that. I would start looking at some block-level census data from some areas that you know are gentrified in various cities and see what stands out as different from the national averages.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  8. #8
    Cyburbian iamme's avatar
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    I don't have much background in this but how would the "non-gentrified" parcels be able to serve as a control group. As the neighborhood changes, the under/un-developed parcels will increase in value commensable with their development potential. Your only control group would be in a neighborhood without the possibility of gentrification and which is in a simliar situation socioeconomically, culturally, and geographically. Good Luck, it looks like a challenge.

    Quote Originally posted by ricepg
    I am new to this board so I hope that I am posting in an OK place. I recently got my thesis topic approved and am looking for some help. I am looking at the fiscal aspect of gentrification in a neighborhood of approxmitly 200 homes - basically what does gentrification contribute to the tax base. The problem that I face is that I am looking for a way to to distinguish homes in the neighborhood that have undergone gentrification from those that have not by using a set of criteria that typically defines gentrification. The "non-gentrified" homes would represent a control group to be compared to the gentrified group. So far I have some ideas but am interested in any helpful ideas that you may have. Also if you have seen or heard of any atricles or papers on a similar study. I haved begun looking through the urban/planning/geography/economics journals.

    Thanks

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    Potential data sources.

    Time series information on building permits to quantify gentrification activities;
    Time series property tax appraisals from the County;
    Real Estate sales data;
    Household income indicators such as public assistance receiptients in the neighborhood (showing the impact of gentrification on displacement of low income households);

    I don't know, but there should be dozens of ways to measure gentrification.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Budgie
    Potential data sources.

    Time series information on building permits to quantify gentrification activities;
    Time series property tax appraisals from the County;
    Real Estate sales data;
    Household income indicators such as public assistance receiptients in the neighborhood (showing the impact of gentrification on displacement of low income households);

    I don't know, but there should be dozens of ways to measure gentrification.
    Yup.

    You can pull the assessor's records to determine the value of individual properties. Match that against building permits for major rehabilitation or new construction. How does the neighborhood compare to the city as a whole? How do non-rehabbed properties compare to rehabbed properties in the neighborhood, and to the city as a whole? My hypothesis would be that non-rehabbed properties in a gentrifying neighborhood appreciate in value at a faster rate than properties in the city as a whole, as the value of the location increases.

    PBS ran an interesting documentary about gays and lesbians moving into a poor neighborhood and gentrifying it, and the conflicts that caused with the long-time, poor residents.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  11. #11
    Cyburbian ricepg's avatar
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    Thank you all for you help. As for using building permit data, well I was considering doing that. However, I've heard that this can be notoroiusly innaccurate as many people do not go throught the trouble or they under value the work to be done. But I suppose that I could address this in some way. But if I was to do this I would need to say that one characteristic of a gentrified home is when a building permit issued for improvements/upgrades represents X% of the total value of a home (?). If this is the case how could one determine such a value?

  12. #12

    A primer on Gentrification

    I have a marvellous paper that would be of help to you:

    Kennedy, M., Leonard, P. "Dealing with Neighbourhood Change: A Primer on Gentrification and Policy Choices" Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, The Brookings Institution (April, 2001) for www.policylink.org

    Link to PDF

    The paper serves as a primer on how to view the complex issues of gentrification. It reviews the findings, analyses and frameworks developed during the gentrification wave of the '70's and '80's. The paper outlines the complex ways that current and "original" reisdents view gentrification- and clarifies that long-time neighbours can take very different positions on the gentrification issue.

    Additionally, the paper shows the wide range in the way gentrification pressures play out in three very different cities and one multi-city region - Atlanta, Cleveland, Washington D.C., and the San Francisco Bay Area - pointing out that gemtrification is a much more urgent concern in some areas than in others, where it hardly exists at all. Finally, the paper suggests policies and strategies that can be pursued to advance equitable development by optimizing the benefits of neighbourhood change while minimizing or eliminating the downsides of such change.

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