Living Near An Airport: The Good And The Bad

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Published date: Oct 05, 2018
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Living near an airport: the good and the bad

If you’ve been following the content production of RealEstateAgent.com you’ve probably noticed how we love to write about strange and/or unusual real estate scenarios. We’ve already written about living near a highway, considered if living near a cemetery affects the value of your home and even questioned whether or not you would live in a haunted house if the price was right.

With population growth and inner-city developments all over the country, the scenario we’re exploring today shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Living near an airport is something that’s becoming increasingly common, and there’s a fairly large chance that you may find yourself in this situation at one point or another. America is a country that is ever increasingly reliant on air travel, and the propagation of airports is just one of the many side effects of this phenomenon. 

Here are some facts to completely boggle your mind: there are about 20,000 cities in America and 19,248 airports. The thing is that 14,112 of those airports are private airports, and 5,145 are public airports. And, from the latter, not every single one is that large international hub of airplane carriers you’re thinking of, some are local airports, some are basically homes with private runways.


Living near a small airport poses many of the same risks and nuisances that you’ll face when living near a larger airport. These factors might not be quite as pressing when you’re living near a smaller airport, but you will still feel them. The main thing about living close to an airport is this: there’s no working around it; you will feel the good and the bad no matter how hard you try to avoid it. But enough about context. Let’s take a look at the actual good and bad of living near an airport.

Advantages of living near an airport

Advantages of living near an airport

Now, as you might imagine, living near an airport has its fair share of advantages. There are certainly plenty of disadvantages as well, but overall we think it’s fair to say that living near an airport is a pretty sweet deal. In this section of today’s article, we’ll be going over the most relevant of these factors so you know what to expect if you want to buy a home near the airport.

You’re very close to the airport.

This one may seem a bit obvious, but it’s a compelling advantage nonetheless. On the one hand, airports are often located some distance away from urban centers, so friends from out of town will hardly ask to stay at your home because they’ll rather stay within walking distance from tourist attractions. On the other hand, there used to be a time when living near an airport was widely seen as a bad thing, but with the age of fast connectivity, living close to an airport is becoming a good thing.


A recent MIT study shows that half of Fortune 500 companies headquarters are located within 10 miles of a big airport, so chances are, by living near an airport, you’re also living in an area filled with good jobs very close to home. In fact, some real estate developers believe airports will become the next boomtowns; which leads us to the next good thing about living near an airport: the cost of living.

It’s more affordable.

See, this change towards the benefit of living near an airport we just mentioned is happening now, but the shift is still very much in transition. All across America you still see communities complaining to local authorities about airport plans close to their home, so you can still get nice square footage for a better price. You might find a sweet deal on a house with a pool and a huge backyard at a much lower price than you’d expect to pay.

While some may be put out by the incessant noise and fumes that residents of a home near the airport are forced to deal with, the affordability that comes as a result of these factors is a compelling reason to buy such a home. For households with limited incomes and savings, the ability to buy a home at a greatly discounted price may come as a godsend.

Less Traffic

Airports usually are created in a way that incoming and outgoing traffic quickly disperses, with a lot of highways connecting drivers to the main parts of town, so, when you live close to one, your able to quickly hop on a flight to any place you wish to visit, which saves you a lot of time if you frequent distant locations on a regular basis. 


Combine the last three aspects and you have a great opportunity to invest in airbnb renting, getting an affordable place close to the airport for constant travelers who need to be close to the airport but also within a few minutes from everywhere. This can be a tremendous opportunity for anyone with an enterprising spirit and some ingenuity!

Emergency situations

Airports are an important logistical factor in any city, so they play a key role in emergency situations and worst-case scenarios provided by natural disasters and terrorist attacks. Living near an airport will provide you with not only a quick exit, but you will benefit from the logistic importance of the airport whenever there’s a city-wide power outage, for instance. The region near the airport will be the last to experience a blackout and the first to recover from one.

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Disadvantages of living near an airport

Disadvantages of living near an airport

Now that we’ve taken a closer look at the upsides of living near an airport, it’s time to review things at the other side of the spectrum: the downsides. While we would argue that these downsides are outweighed by the upsides, your choice will of course depend on how greatly the upsides outweigh the downsides for you personally. Let’s take a look at these downsides now! 

Noise

This is the main source of complaints from people independently of them living near a small airport, a big one or a home with a private runway. Airplanes can be noisy, bro! And there’s not much you can do about completely killing the noise. What people have done is to minimize it. Homeowners learn how to reduce noise pollution and improve their sound insulation, get thicker “soundproof” windows etc. 


Moreover, the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) has set quiet noise requirements that forced the airplane companies to build less noisy turbines. It’s much better than what it used to be and we’re confident it will become even better with time. As progressive politicians gradually gain more influence in legislative bodies, regulations are likely to become even more strict. This means one thing: less noise and fewer fumes for nearby residents!

Odor

Did you know that this is an issue? Airplane fuel combustion is very smelly. You don’t feel that so much when you’re in the airport because you’re inside an enclosed and conditioned place, plus airplanes are not at full speed on the ground – most of them are standing there, with engines turned off.

But when you live close to an airport, you feel the odors so often your nose stops detecting it, but the headache it can cause reminds you the smell is still there. And there’s no hiding or minimizing; when it comes to odor it’s better to just leave it be because you will only make it worse by adding air fresheners and other similar solutions.

Hazards

Well, the headache caused by the noise and odor can be considered as health hazards caused by having airports as neighbors, but the pollution caused by airplanes causes much more hazards to your health than that. When we constantly breathe in the Ozone that’s produced by the aircraft, our respiratory tissue can become deeply affected, make our breathing difficult, and, in the long-term, cause emphysema and chronic bronchitis.


Soot and other ultra-fine particulates that don’t dissipate in the air and can lead to the development of lung cancer and severe cellular damage that can in turn lead to the onset of depression, mutations and other unpleasant side effects. Accident hazards are also a concern for residents of homes located near airports, albeit a much less pressing one.

Property values near airports

gold coins stack

Now that you have a better idea of the various pros and cons you’ll face living near an airport, you are probably concerned about how the value of your property might be affected by its proximity to an airport. While the downsides may be outweighed by the upsides, this will not ring true for every area. Whether or not property values will remain stable is largely inconsistent across the United States, depending heavily on other local factors.

One of the biggest concerns for homebuyers when considering buying a home near the airport is the noise. Statistics are showing that some of the homes sold in the proximity of the airport, areas with noise levels of 65 decibels or higher sell for about $2,400 less than their equivalent in quieter areas.

The effect of air pollution is also negatively affecting the property value near airports, however, noise pollution seems to be a more determining factor. Other common impacts that aviation has over property value are safety, traffic, and scenery, however, these factors are not always negatively impacting the home value.


Very often you will see zoning regulation being implemented near some airports in order to reserve the area around for commercial, industrial and retail use only. In doing so, it limits the construction of residential buildings, childcare centers, schools, and so on. Although this isn’t the case in the proximity of every airport, it’s a lot more common than you might think. The effect of this zoning can be complex, but generally it leads to lower property values.

Worth the cost?

However, the convenience of living near an airport can be a boost to home prices. One such example is Southlake, Texas, one of the wealthiest communities in the nation. It has a high concentration of professional athletes, high-ranking corporate executives, and media personalities.

Average prices for homes here near the DFW runway, go for about $800,000 and these high prices are pushed because these influential people are air travel intensive and prefer to be close to the airport. With good realtors in Southlake TX you might be able to bring the price down but it is unlikely because the area is very competitive.

On a different note, you have Los Angeles County with about 930 miles of freeway. Los Angeles international airport is considered by scientists to be one of the major sources for particulate matter pollution in Los Angeles. Producing enormous amounts of hazardous emissions compared to automobiles, airplanes are simply a much less efficient means of transportation on a per-capita basis. 

These particles can be embedded in the lungs and enter the bloodstream causing lung problems and different types of pulmonary diseases. In this situation living near an airport might cause health issues and this could potentially result in the depreciation of home prices. For those with respiratory conditions, this is a death knell for any purchasing plans.

 

Conclusion

As you can see, there certainly are good and bad things. Still not convinced about the good of it? Maybe start small, try out living near a small airport. You love watching airplanes go by your window and even can utilize that app that identifies which flight that is? That’s great! Defining whether or not proximity to an airport is good or bad is a matter of taste and circumstance, and we hope this article has shed a bit of light on the subject, so you can figure out whether or not it’s right for you.

What do you think are the pros and cons of living near an airport? Let us know in the comment section below. Also, don’t forget to share the article on your social media accounts if you like what you’re reading! 

 

Comments for Living Near An Airport: The Good And The Bad


Birachandra Birachandra said:

Living near an airport is not advisable.

Feb 25, 2020  20:41:40

 
Real Estate Agent

Hey, Birachandra! As we have already highlighted in the article there are benefits from living near an airport, and there are downsides as well. It might not be advisable from your perspective, but for other people, the pros might outweigh the cons and they will eventually choose to live near an airport.

Apr 08, 2020  09:10:08
 
 

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