‘Gayborhoods’ Offer Higher Home Values
By Christina Sturgis
People may view Fort Lauderdale as a tourist-friendly coastal city, but the real estate experts at Zillow have found another characteristic worth noting: the Poinsettia Heights neighborhood is a “gayborhood,” and it’s good for real estate values.
It’s called the Gayborhood Phenomenon in the book “Zillow Talk: The New Rules of Real Estate.” Zillow determined which neighborhoods have the highest percentages of gay-partner households from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.
“Over the past forty years, home prices in historically gay neighborhoods have steadily outperformed average prices for the metros in which they’re located,” write Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff and Chief Economist Stan Humphries.
In Poinsettia Heights, an estimated 28 percent of households are headed by same-sex partners. The region embraces these nontraditional families. For example, the city of Wilton Manors, which adjoins Fort Lauderdale, has a page on its official website devoted to gay life, and says the local elementary school is high in quality and includes the children of many LGBT families.
“The City of Wilton Manors is a place where diversity is not tolerated, but embraced. We welcome you here!” the website states.
More assistance for gay families comes from the Broward County Property Appraiser in the form of a web page explaining how gay marriage affects the Florida Homestead Property Tax Exemption. Other services of interest to gay families are available through the Pride Center of Florida in Fort Lauderdale.
Poinsettia Heights, the Fort Lauderdale neighborhood highlighted by Zillow, has a very active neighborhood association that issues a newsletter sponsored by a local real estate agent.
The median home in the United States is worth $184,600, and home values are expected to rise 2.3 percent over the next year, according to the Zillow Home Value Index. The median Florida home is valued at $185,000, and values are expected to rise 1.5 percent over the next year.