Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Placing Aesthetic Desires Before Individual Needs
Those who advocate ridiculous zoning laws shall suffer the consequence of their folly.
If only people were bright to enough to grasp that over-zealous development would most likely not occur in the absence of zoning regulations.
Ever heard of the law of supply and demand?
So did developers, who are doing all they can to alleviate the current housing shortage, in stark contrast to those who have a NIMBY approach, or more like "Let them (the houseless) eat cake".
Developers and speculators can only make money when the supply is inadequate to the demand schedule. If the demand schedule cannot be met (when the average person can't/won't pay for the currently supplied good), it means that housing is expensive overall, and the longer the situation is not rectified, housing costs can only increase, which virtually guarantees the future housing output to be priced exclusively to the upper classes.
But you ask, surely the developers will have to lower their prices, in order to sell, right? Yes, its true that developers will have to finagle their way in order to sell somewhat-affordable housing, but that usually means the consequences of using cheaper materials, shoddy construction techniques and overall corner-cutting. Some developers will go as far as playing the legal-minefield, as does my friend (or is it acquaintance?) H.R. But most of all, you cannot then count on them to then build costly "contributing" buildings.
But the pity is that you, the neighborhoods are the victims of your own folly. By artificially limiting the density and heights of neighborhoods, you do nothing but drive prices higher and away from the demand schedule required for affordable goods. The current housing, and the newly available housing will stay out of the affordable realm.
If you thought just a little outside the box you would realize that developers can't make money when there is an oversupply of a good. They won't be incentivized to overbid on properties when they can't make their and their partner's required returns.
The elimination of zoning restrictions will maximize the housing supply to the optimal, and affordable level, while bringing up the standard of living to everyone.
But of course, the "central planners" out there who think they know best for all of us, end up doing more damage to the average wage earner than these "evil" "hasidic" developers, who in their zeal to make a living (what a horrendous crime!!), are helping alleviate the housing shortage and helping to keep lower housing costs.