These cities have the toughest laws for home builders — and the highest property prices

In cities like Seattle, local lawmakers have imposed more (not fewer) regulations on real-estate development over the past 12 years. / Marketwatch

‘There is no incentive for local municipalities to change anything because homeowners vote, and homeowners understandably want to protect their home values’

By Jacob Passy | Marketwatch

Heavily-regulated land-use zoning has become the norm across the United States over the last decade — and there’s strong reason to believe that has driven housing costs higher in many cities.

But in some parts of the country, land-use zoning is particularly stringent.

new working paper from researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University examined the change in local zoning laws since 2006, based on survey data collected in 2006 and in 2018. Using that data, the researchers created an index that calculated where land-use regulations were the most onerous.


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