Letter: Residential B&B’s lower home values

To the Editor:

It seems common sense that “Front Porch Farms” application to operate 47 Circle Drive as a bed and breakfast, in the middle of a residential neighborhood, would lower the surrounding area’s home values. The proposed B&B could very easily accommodate 200 people a year — that’s over 1,000 people in a five-year period that would not have entered into our neighborhood otherwise. In this alone, Front Porch Farms would drastically increase the chance of harm to our families, just like doubling the amount of cars on a highway would increase the rate of accidents on that highway.

Adding reduced safety to a changing neighborhood character creates an insurmountable pressure on home values. For the vast majority of families considering a home purchase, living next to a permanent resident is going to be much more desirable when compared to living next to a mini hotel where your neighbors are changing every day. Now and in the foreseeable future, homebuyers will be asking if your home is near a short-term rental like Front Porch Farms. Furthermore, industry experts predict that sellers will be required to disclose if their home is near any short-term rentals, like a B&B or Air BNB. Still don’t believe me? Prominent real estate professional and expert witness Barbara Nichols wrote this for the National Association of Realtors: “A single-family home or condo unit next door to a short-term rental — where the occupants change every few days — will take longer to sell and bring in lower offers. You never know who your neighbors could be, and that’s a classic situation of property stigma.” To learn more about the many risks of introducing B&B’s into Ridgefield’s residential neighborhoods visit circledriveneighbors.com.

Robert Pacifico

Hobby Drive, Sept. 3