Diversity via Duplexes
If you’ve ever read about the way Detroit decayed over the last 50 years, you’ll see lots of talk about central planning by the city. The more the city tried to manipulate a master plan in an effort to produce results, the more unintended consequences there were. One of the things that happens when city and zoning laws get too stringent is that neighborhood blocks become overconcentrated with various types of property.
The blocks aren’t diverse, and you end up having entire blocks containing all properties of one type:
- Industrial Parks
- Section 8
- Large Homes
- Small Homes
While it might sound counterintuitive, forcing all the multi-family housing into one concentrated area isn’t helpful to schools or social support systems.
When there are entire sections of cities that have no “eyes and ears” of the elderly or engaged families to keep an eye on things, you see crime starting to spike.
The bottom line is that diversity in housing, business, and cultural systems is healthy for cities and helps to ensure that each neighborhood has what it needs:
- Grocery and Retail Shops to Serve People
- Various Commercial Buildings for Jobs and Commerce
- Multi-family Housing for People Unable to Own
- Large and Small Homes that Provide Diversity
Owner-occupied duplexes, triplexes, and quads can do amazing things for a community. They allow families that would otherwise live in apartments to live in different neighborhoods that have a more diverse socio-economic base.
While renting can be advantageous for some, most people desire to move up the economic ladder and own a home. When a community has renters living alongside home-owners, there’s an uplift that occurs in morale and relationships.
Not only that, but when the community has diverse options for rent, it can see a more diverse tax base throughout various wards. When industry or housing types are clustered together, they are susceptible to various market risks.
We can look at the decline of the steel industry in Duluth or the flour mills in downtown Minneapolis. When entire blocks are dependent on one type of commerce, sector, or type of tenant – they’re over-exposed to risk. Naturally, failed industries will birth new opportunity and property ownership – but diversity will help blocks and wards weather the storms a bit easier.
Owner-occupied duplexes and triplexes can help provide diversity to neighborhoods and help economically as well.
In fact, one of the most beautiful things about becoming an owner-occupant of a duplex is that you’ll be in tighter community with those around you. Landlords of duplexes tend to be more involved in the community affairs because not only do they care about their property value – they also care that their investment is desirable and provides appreciating value and rents.
There are so many benefits that duplexes can have, and we think it’s simply incredible that we get the opportunity in a city filled with such a significant amount. We have tons of duplexes, triplexes, and quads to help promote tons of economic diversity.