Residents of a progressive inner suburb are angry that their decades-long battle to protect property values succeeded, resulting in a flurry of homes being sold at record breaking prices.
“Two million dollars for a 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom house?! This is outrageous!” exclaimed Paula Zenkowski who regularly complains about “blight” caused by neighbors who refuse to hire organically-certified gardeners to keep their grass below 3.5 inches. “You really have to wonder what kind of snobby assholes will be moving in at that ridiculous price.”
Once a haven of eclectic styles and sizes affordable to young hippies with backyard chickens and absurdist lawn sculptures, the neighborhood is now buzzing with resentment as long-time residents realize the cruel irony of their protective practices: preserving single family zoning in a desirable location with ample free parking now means they have priced themselves out of their own market.
“It doesn’t make any economic sense,” said Sharon Gammond, an economics professor at Georgetown University. “All we did was leverage our highly-educated and wealthy citizenry to distort the free market to create an immutable boundary around our highly sought-after school district to constrain enrollment, while at the same time, artificially restricting housing supply in our community for the sake of “neighborhood character” despite enormous demand from people who want to live in a major metropolitan employment center. That shouldn’t be the reason for this astronomical increase in property values. Must be those greedy developers.”
Despite the overwhelming evidence of what caused home values to significantly rise, residents continue to ignore common sense solutions to reverse trends, and instead, plan to lobby the government to bail them out.
“They say the solution is to build low cost housing in my neighborhood, but people should look elsewhere if they can’t afford to live here,” said Peter O’Gafferty who says he can’t afford to buy his own house at its current value. “Right now we need real affordable housing solutions, like lowering the property tax on my million dollar house…but of course without reducing city services.”
Even though a new 1.9 million dollar listing drew even more ire among residents, predictably, no immediate action was taken. “Well, as much as I don’t like it, it is increasing the value of my house,” said longtime homeowner Chris Gettysburg. “Plus, it’s better than the alternative of converting it into three $600k condos. Who the hell could afford those?”