Do Neighborhood Watch Signs Hurt Sales?

December 15, 2015 | Comments Off on Do Neighborhood Watch Signs Hurt Sales?

neighborhood watch pic

Neighborhood watch signs may be intended to show home owners’ that neighbors have one another’s backs but that may not be the message to home buyers. The signs plastered on telephone poles and parks may be a deterrent to home buyers.

In Longboat Key, Fla., a debate is raging whether neighborhood watch signs are good or bad for property values. Former Mayor George Spoll argues that the signs can make an area look crime-ridden and can dent home prices and scare off potential buyers.

“I’ve had clients remark that it’s a peaceful positive gesture that the community is keeping an eye out,” David Zarghami of Keller Williams Realty told Meanwhile, “others perceive it as: ‘Well why did they have to create the neighborhood watch? What was the issue that started that?’”

The signs may be viewed as a red flag to would-be buyers.

“The fact that the sign is posted begs the question why and what has transpired,” says Cara Ameer, a real estate professional in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. “It is definitely something that a buyer would notice and question regarding the safety and security of the neighborhood. If it is concerning for buyers who may hesitate on moving into the neighborhood, I think these signs could negatively affect property values.”

The verdict is out whether the signs make a difference.

“It would be hard to say that a watch sign on its own is a good or bad thing, but in particular contexts it could make a difference,” says David Reiss, research director at the Center for Urban Business Entrepreneurship at Brooklyn Law School. “If home buyers have heard that crime is an issue there, neighborhood watch signs may give comfort that the neighborhood is doing something about it. On the other hand, if it’s a neighborhood that is not facing major crime issues, signs may be a confusing signal.”

What do you think? Reply in the comments below.

Source: “Are Neighborhood Watch Signs Turning Off Prospective Home Buyers?” (Dec. 13, 2015) and “Are Neighborhood Watch Signs Killing Home Sales?”® (Dec. 14, 2015)


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