Large windfarms can knock as much as 12% off the values of homes within a 2km radius, and reduce property prices as far as 14km away, according to research by the London School of Economics. The findings contrast sharply with a report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research in March, which found no negative impact on property prices within a 5km radius of a turbine.
The LSE findings will fan demands by homeowners for compensation when windfarm developments are given the go-ahead. Currently, windfarm operators pay rent on the land they occupy and make contributions to community causes, but are under no legal obligation to compensate homeowners for loss of value.
The report, “Gone with the wind: valuing the visual impacts of wind turbines through house prices”, by Professor Stephen Gibbons, found that “windfarm developments reduce prices in locations where the turbines are visible, relative to where they are not visible, and that the effects are causal”.
For the average sized windfarm, the price reduction is around 5-6% for homes with a visible windfarm within 2km, falling to less than 2% between 2-4km, and to near zero between 8-14km, which is at the limit of likely visibility. In areas close to windfarms, but where the turbines are not visible, the report found there was a small increase (around 2%) in property prices.