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Tree cover and property values in the United States: A national meta-analysis

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Kovacs, Kent ; West, Grant ; Nowak, David J.; Haight, Robert G.

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Ecological Economics


Our meta-analysis uses 21 hedonic property value studies and 157 unique observations to study the influence of tree cover on the value of homes in the United States. We construct elasticity estimates of the percentage change in home value for a 1% change in the percentage of tree cover around a home. Cluster weighted averages of the elasticities account for the housing market and the precision of the property price effects for tree cover on and off property and for three categories of tree cover density. Meta-regression models further control for the housing market and tree cover heterogeneity, the methodological techniques of the primary study, and publication bias. The Mundlak meta-regression model with controls for US regions has the lowest out-of-sample transfer error. The larger elasticity for off property tree cover than on property tree cover (unless tree density is 10% or lower) suggests that the property value of homes rises more if tree cover is not on land that homeowners are responsible for maintaining. The elasticity in neighborhoods with greater than 25% tree cover (0.013) is four times larger than the elasticity in neighborhoods with 0 to 10% tree cover (0.003).


Hedonic; Benefit transfer; Urban forest


Kovacs, Kent; West, Grant; Nowak, David J.; Haight, Robert G. 2022. Tree cover and property values in the United States: A national meta-analysis. Ecological Economics. 197(3): 107424. 13 p.

Last updated on: November 7, 2022