How pollution is choking the housing market

Did you know that airline flight paths can affect the price of a property? 

It’s no secret that many factors come into play when it comes to the housing market, and pollution is slowly becoming an important consideration for prospective buyers. 

According to research by the Daily Telegraph, environmental considerations can significantly affect housing prices, sinking them by 15 per cent. Various forms of pollution play a big role in the housing market, and here is how. 

Air pollution

In 2017, London air pollution levels surpassed that of Beijing. For the first time, a ‘high’ air pollution alert was issued as international limits for pollution were broken. In his second statement on the capital’s pollution levels, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan called London’s ‘filthy air’ a ‘health crisis’. 

Calls for new rules that would force estate agents to publish traffic light style pollution warnings come along reports that nearly 9,500 people die annually as a result of long-term exposure to air pollution. 

Many prospective buyers have began actively using sophisticated data to track air quality and individual postcodes. 

‘I get asked about pollution levels so regularly that I now check it as a standard before suggesting a property to clients’ says Henry Pryor, a professional home buyer and property agent. 

Noise pollution

The Civil Aviation Authority has unsurprisingly classified the noise near Heathrow as ‘significantly annoying’. If you’re looking at buying a property near an airport, this is probably one of your biggest concerns. 

If planes are continuously taking off or landing, you would average a sound level of more than 57 decibels. This is a problem and now many property owners sell in anticipation of an airport expansion – such as the opening of a third runway at Heathrow – due to potential increase in noise and disruption.

Water pollution

Toxicity from pollution can build up overtime and cause serious harm to residents. 

In a study by Leggett and Bockstael who were investigating benefits to house prices when improving water quality found that more polluted water significantly depressed property values. 

Radioactive pollution

In 2003, a house in Berkshire described as ‘the most radioactive house in Britain’ went up for sale. 

Its’ plutonium levels were 40 times higher than normal making its asking price £200,000- significantly less than the average property prices in the area. 

Make sure you keep all of this in mind when you’re next considering buying or selling a property, as these factors are becoming increasingly important in the property market and could affect the price of your property.

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