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The Adverse Impacts of Local Historic Designation: The Case of Small Apartment Buildings in Philadelphia


  • Asabere, Paul K
  • Huffman, Forrest E
  • Mehdian, Seyed


This paper examines the sales effects of local historic preservation. Using the hedonic framework our study shows that small historic apartment buildings experienced a 24 percent reduction in price compared to nonlocally certified properties. Our variable for federal historic districts, however, produced statistically insignificant results. The results suggest that historic control (as practiced in Philadelphia) is confiscatory. The study illustrates an outcome of public regulation that impinges on private property rights. Copyright 1994 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Asabere, Paul K & Huffman, Forrest E & Mehdian, Seyed, 1994. "The Adverse Impacts of Local Historic Designation: The Case of Small Apartment Buildings in Philadelphia," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 225-234, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jrefec:v:8:y:1994:i:3:p:225-34

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Steven D. Levitt & Chad Syverson, 2008. "Market Distortions When Agents Are Better Informed: The Value of Information in Real Estate Transactions," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(4), pages 599-611, November.
    2. Williams, Joseph T, 1998. "Agency and Brokerage of Real Assets in Competitive Equilibrium," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 11(2), pages 239-280.
    3. Lynn Fisher & Abdullah Yavas, 2010. "A Case for Percentage Commission Contracts: The Impact of a “Race” Among Agents," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 40(1), pages 1-13, January.
    4. Rutherford, R.C. & Springer, T.M. & Yavas, A., 2005. "Conflicts between principals and agents: evidence from residential brokerage," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 627-665, June.
    5. Anglin, Paul M & Arnott, Richard, 1991. "Residential Real Estate Brokerage as a Principal-Agent Problem," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 99-125, June.
    6. Thomas J. Miceli, 1991. "The Multiple Listing Service, Commission Splits, and Broker Effort," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 19(4), pages 548-566.
    7. David Geltner & Brian D. Kluger & Norman G. Miller, 1991. "Optimal Price and Selling Effort from the Perspectives of the Broker and Seller," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 19(1), pages 1-24.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gabriel Ahlfeldt & Kristoffer Möller & Sevrin Waights & Nicolai Wendland, 2012. "On prisoner's dilemmas and gilded cages: The economics of heritage preservation," ERSA conference papers ersa12p783, European Regional Science Association.
    2. Gabriel M. Ahlfeldt & Nancy Holman, 2015. "Distinctively Different: A New Approach to Valuing Architectural Amenities," SERC Discussion Papers 0171, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    3. N. Edward Coulson & Michael L. Lahr, 2005. "Gracing the Land of Elvis and Beale Street: Historic Designation and Property Values in Memphis," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 33(3), pages 487-507, September.
    4. repec:kap:iaecre:v:18:y:2012:i:2:p:151-161 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Coulson, N Edward & Leichenko, Robin M, 2001. "The Internal and External Impact of Historical Designation on Property Values," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 23(1), pages 113-124, July.
    6. Gabriel M. Ahlfeldt & Wolfgang Maennig & Felix J. Richter, 2013. "Urban Renewal after the Berlin Wall," Working Papers 049, Chair for Economic Policy, University of Hamburg.
    7. Paolo Rosato & Lucia Rotaris & Margaretha Breil & Valentina Zanatta, 2008. "Do We Care about Built Cultural Heritage? The Empirical Evidence Based on the Veneto House Market," Working Papers 2008.64, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    8. Douglas S. Noonan, 2013. "Market effects of historic preservation," Chapters,in: Handbook on the Economics of Cultural Heritage, chapter 17, pages i-i Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Felix Richter, 2014. "Winner Picking in Urban Revitalization Policies: Empirical Evidence from Berlin," ERSA conference papers ersa14p1424, European Regional Science Association.
    10. Gabriel Ahlfeldt & Wolfgang Maennig, 2010. "Stadium Architecture and Urban Development from the Perspective of Urban Economics," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(3), pages 629-646, September.
    11. Gabriel M. Ahlfeldt & Wolfgang Maennig, 2010. "Substitutability and Complementarity of Urban Amenities: External Effects of Built Heritage in Berlin," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 38(2), pages 285-323.
    12. Gabriel M. Ahlfeldt, 2010. "Architektur, Ökonomie - Architekturökonomie," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 11(4), pages 340-355, November.
    13. Cebula, Richard J., 2009. "The Hedonic Pricing Model Applied to the Housing Market of the City of Savannah and Its Savannah Historic Landmark District," The Review of Regional Studies, Southern Regional Science Association, vol. 39(1), pages 9-22.
    14. Hans R.A. Koster & Jan Rouwendal, 2015. "Historic Amenities and Housing Externalities: Evidence from The Netherlands," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 15-023/VIII, Tinbergen Institute.
    15. Martin Heintzelman & Jason Altieri, 2013. "Historic Preservation: Preserving Value?," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 46(3), pages 543-563, April.
    16. Vicki Been & Ingrid Gould Ellen & Michael Gedal & Edward Glaeser & Brian J. McCabe, 2014. "Preserving History or Hindering Growth? The Heterogeneous Effects of Historic Districts on Local Housing Markets in New York City," NBER Working Papers 20446, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Faroek Lazrak & Peter Nijkamp & Piet Rietveld & Jan Rouwendal, 2014. "The market value of cultural heritage in urban areas: an application of spatial hedonic pricing," Journal of Geographical Systems, Springer, vol. 16(1), pages 89-114, January.
    18. Eric Thompson & David Rosenbaum & Benjamin Schmitz, 2011. "Property values on the plains: the impact of historic preservation," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 47(2), pages 477-491, October.
    19. Christopher Coombs & Nikias Sarafoglou & William Crosby, 2012. "Property Taxation, Capitalization, and the Economic Implications of Raising Property Taxes," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 18(2), pages 151-161, May.
    20. Been, Vicki & Ellen, Ingrid Gould & Gedal, Michael & Glaeser, Edward & McCabe, Brian J., 2016. "Preserving history or restricting development? The heterogeneous effects of historic districts on local housing markets in New York City," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(C), pages 16-30.
    21. Julian Diaz III & J. Andrew Hansz & Matthew L. Cypher & Darren K. Hayunga, 2008. "Conservation Status and Residential Transaction Prices: Initial Evidence from Dallas, Texas," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 30(2), pages 225-248.
    22. Sevrin Waights, 2016. "The Preservation of Historic Districts - Is it Worth it?," SERC Discussion Papers 0202, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.

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