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March 14, 2007

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That's the title of a brand new working paper I wrote with Charlotta Mellander. Here's the first bit.

“Want to know where a great place to invest in real estate will be five or 10 years from now? Look at where artists are living now,” so wrote a 2007 Business Week story provocatively titled, “Bohemian Today, High-Rent Tomorrow.” A wide body of studies has shown that artist and gay populations act as urban pioneers and that their location choices can have substantial upward effects on housing prices (Castells 1983; Ley 1994; Zukin 1995; Smith 1996). But artistic and gay populations are relatively small and the evidence of their direct effect on housing prices is limited and anecdotal. There are roughly 330,000 working artists in the United States and approximately 1.3 million total “bohemians” if we count everyone who works in arts, design, entertainment and media occupations, amounting to approximately 1.3 percent of the US workforce in 2000. There are 8.8 million self-identified gay and lesbian gay people in the United States, roughly 4 percent of the adult population (Gates and Ost 2004). Still, the basic idea that gay and bohemian populations effect on housing prices surely makes for good headlines. And the notion has become an accepted conventional wisdom among many urbanists and real estate developers. But, a basic question remains: Can groups that are this small really have a significant effect of housing prices? This is the core question for our research."

Click here to download the whole thing.  Enjoy.  We look forward to your comments.


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Is it possible that gays and bohemians make good "urban colonizers" because they don't tend to have children? (since folks with children may value safe neighborhoods more and aren't as concerned with local public education).

real estate investment banking

I hope they fix AER, when my mother was sick back in 1996 I had to take emergency leave and AER told me that they could not give me a Grant or a Loan since I was a single soldier living in the barracks. Needless to say that was the last year/ time I gave any money to AER. If it was not for the Red Cross I would not have been able to take the emergency leave. I am glad that the military/ DoD is doing something about the money issue that soldiers get in to with the predatory lenders out there. Hopefully the...

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