As I’ve mentioned in other places, the issue of property values around wind projects has been a contentious one. The wind industry trots out its favorable reports that show no loss of value, and I (among others) demonstrate how flawed and biased these reports are. Since I live part-time on Amherst Island, which is right next to Wolfe, I’ve been following Wolfe very closely, and not just property values.
One theme I’ve heard over the last few years is that the tax appraisers (MPAC) have not reduced the evaluations on Wolfe because there have been no sales. This seems to be incorrect, as a search of the MLS sales data base reveals 23 properties that have been sold on WI in 2009 and 2010. From everything I’ve heard MPAC is pretty dysfunctional, so what they end up doing with WI evaluations is anybody’s guess. But I thought it would be worthwhile to take a look to see what properties ended up selling.
There are two parts to this posting. First is showing a picture of Wolfe with the turbines and sold properties displayed. Thanks to Earth Google that can be done with a high degree of accuracy. By the way, if anyone wants my kml file I can send it – let me know. Second is comparing the sold properties with the original WI noise study that was done before the project was built.
Here’s the picture of Wolfe with the locations of the 86 turbines displayed, which can be enlarged by clicking on it. Note that they are all on the western half of the island.
To that picture we now add the sales for 2009 and 2010. The identifiers are the year sold and the last 4 digits of the MLS number.
It is pretty obvious that there have been very few sales among the turbines. I went back and compared the sales with the noise study prepared by the developer’s consultants (28mb, be careful downloading!). There are approximately 600 residential properties in the western half of WI. Of these, 280 were located within 1000m of a turbine and were thus included in the noise study. Of the 600 properties a total of 11 were sold during these two years. Of those 11 just 3 were within the 1000m boundary. In other words, out of 280 properties within 1000m only 3 have sold in the last two years. Out of the remaining 320 properties 8 have sold. I don’t know how many properties there are on the eastern half of the island – I’d guess less than 600 – and of those 12 have sold. The following table shows the figures. Note that I didn’t bother driving all the way to the end of the eastern half to verify their locations, so I didn’t present any hard distances.
I did run some ratios on distance vs. price vs. tax rates, but clearly this sample is too small to prove anything one way or another. There’s no trends either way. Certainly there’s not enough data to even entertain doing any regression analysis.
I plan on continuing to explore WI’s sales. If I can get data from 2000 on it might be instructive, as I could show pictures with the sales year-by-year as the project developed. Stay tuned.