What’s in a name? Well, when it comes to neighborhoods, it’s something that could actually signify how much homes within it are worth. And we found the data to prove it!
Perhaps not surprisingly, the highest average home values in America were found in neighborhoods with beachy-sounding monikers, according to a recent report from Porch. The online home improvement marketplace included only names mentioned at least 25 times in neighborhoods as defined by the U.S. Census.
And not all waterfront words are created equal. Average property values in neighborhoods with the word “island” in them are the highest, at $440,386. And yes, this too makes plenty of sense. Who wouldn’t want to escape the grind on some scenic isle?
The word was followed by “beach,” at an average $423,325; “harbor,” at $416,332; “hills,” at $396,472; and “village,” at $341,997. Rounding out the top 10 were “canyon,” “cove,” “bay,” “San,” and “gardens.”
“Certainly, an island, beach, or harbor are likely waterfront locations or near the beach, and those areas typically have higher home values anyway,” says Porch Project Manager Angela Skane.
Overall, the most common local monikers found across the nation were “lake,” “city,” “park,” “west,” and “valley.” (Who knew there were that many valleys?)
Names “do influence whether or not an area is the kind of place buyers would like to buy into,” Skane says. “A lot of these names are common in movies and TV shows. After all, there was an entire show about rich kids called ‘The Hills.’” Yes, indeed.
Which neighborhood names had some of the lowest home values?
Homes located in neighborhoods with military- and color-related names (basically anything not coastal-sounding) had the lowest property values, according to the report. The worst name for folks hoping to be equity-rich was “fort.” Average home values in neighborhoods with that moniker were only $109,116.
“Fort” was followed by “junction,” at an average $115,268; “rock,” at $115,395; “springs,” at $121,470; and “Las,” at $126,281. The rest of these 10 were “white,” “blue,” “mills,” “union,” and “mount.”
But don’t let a name stop you from buying the home of your dreams. In the tony Brooklyn, NY, neighborhood of Fort Greene, the median home price is a whopping $1,725,000. So exceptions do indeed abound.
The neighborhood names where homes are often undervalued
Buyers looking for smart investments may want to consider neighborhoods with the words “acres,” “oaks,” “lakes,” and “green” in their names. These properties tend to be valued a little under the average home price of an area—despite residents having above-average incomes. That means these homes may be more likely to appreciate.
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