Adult Retirement Communities, Local Property Values, and School Quality: A Case Study of Two New Jersey Towns

By Justin B. Hollander, PhD,
Monica Gregoire,
and Daniel Zinder

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This report explores the delicate issue of change in developing neighborhoods, specifically the development of retirement communities and thereby the subsequent migration of new elderly residents into these communities. It examines the land use impacts that demographic changes resultant from retirement community housing developments have on residential property sales. This study presents the results of research undertaken to explore the impact of Retirement community development on property sales prices. To accomplish this study, 14,111 residential sales were observed between 2005 and 2009, both within and outside of retirement community boundaries. Additionally, trends in standardized test scores, a common measure of school quality in residential housing literature, were analyzed for each study area. Findings show a weak, negative correlation between the number of retirement units sold and test scores as well as a weak, positive correlation between the change in residential sale prices and test scores.