Cell­phone tow­ers don’t af­fect prices, says study

South Waikato News - - PROPERTY -

A new study claim­ing cell­phone tow­ers do not re­duce the sale prices of nearby houses con­tra­dicts ear­lier re­search and sur­prises at least one home­owner liv­ing near one.

The lat­est re­search from the Univer­sity of Auck­land Busi­ness School re­veals that lamp-post style or sin­gle mono­pole cell­phone tow­ers do not af­fect the sale prices of prop­er­ties nearby.

The study by Depart­ment of Prop­erty lec­tur­ers Dr Olga Filip­pova and Dr Michael Rehm looked at the prop­erty prices of houses within 500 me­tres of 521 cell­phone tow­ers across the Auck­land re­gion sold from 2005 to 2007. It found only vis­ually dis­rup­tive armed mono­pole tow­ers low­ered the value of ad­ja­cent houses.

‘‘Cell­phone tow­ers of­ten raise the ire of nearby home­own­ers, with many claim­ing that their po­ten­tial health ef­fects and vis­ual im­pact low­ers the value of their houses,’’ Dr Rehm said.

‘‘Some real es­tate agents have even put a fig­ure on the sup­posed ef­fect, claim­ing that a nearby cell­phone tower can de­value a prop­erty by 10 to 15 per cent.’’

She said their re­search in­di­cated new cell­phone tow­ers would not have a neg­a­tive im­pact on house prices, as long as telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions providers did not build vis­ually dis­rup­tive armed mono­pole tow­ers in res­i­den­tial ar­eas.

It con­tra­dicts a 2006 study by Lin­coln Univer­sity’s Dr Sandy Bond that showed prop­er­ties in Christchurch within 500m of cell­phone tow­ers dropped in price by 15 per cent on av­er­age.

Many home­own­ers be­lieve cell­phone tow­ers de­value their prop­er­ties. Auck­land res­i­dent Rowan He­g­ley, who saw a tower built in front of his Buck­lands Beach home by Tele­com in 2009, said he was sur­prised at the lat­est study find­ings.

‘‘I haven’t tried to sell yet but I know through peo­ple I’ve spo­ken to in the real es­tate game they’ve had re­sis­tance.’’

Fairfax NZ

SALE PRICES NOT AF­FECTED: New find­ings claim that cell­phone tow­ers do not weaken nearby house sales.

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