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Old 01-25-2011, 03:10 AM
42 posts, read 110,685 times
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I'm looking up homes under the USDA rural home program. Apparently all of Surf City- even oceanfront homes- are considered rural and are eligible for the program.

How is this so?
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Old 01-25-2011, 04:03 AM
Location: Newport, NC
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The off season population of Surf City is only about 400 if I remember correctly. There are only a couple businesses there and a couple restaurants. Maybe that allows it to fall within the definition.
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:21 AM
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Rural, as defined by the Census, is any area not classified as Urban. Urban is any area with a pop density of at 1k/sqmi (urban area) and surrounding areas with a pop density of 500/sqmi (Urban cluster)
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Old 01-25-2011, 01:59 PM
Location: NC
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Surf City is neither rural nor urban. It's suburban. USDA determines status by year around population density rather than how the area is actually built up which is why they designate Surf City as rural. A sparsely built up area (think country, farms, woods, ect) is rural. Suburban is moderately dense single level properties like Surf City or a typical subdivision. Urban is dense multi level (mid and high rise) with a large mix of commercial like New York City.
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Old 01-26-2011, 09:36 AM
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It is in fact suburban, but suburban is not a classification under the Census or USDA. It's jsur urban/rural or Metro/non-metro. The entire county of Pender is rural. In fact the areas considered Urban are smalelr than what you might think. Perhaps the definitions need to be updated. The USDA does break it down further for some things, but uses the base definition for others. the rural home program is one of the things they use the base definition for. The first link, NC.pdf, has pics showing NCs definiton ofr rural areas by the Census, OMB, and for the various different USDA programs.

ERS/USDA Briefing Room - Measuring Rurality: What is Rural?
ERS/USDA Data - Rural Definitions

What is Rural?
Many people have definitions for the term rural, but seldom are these rural definitions in agreement. For some, rural is a subjective state of mind. For others, rural is an objective quantitative measure. The June 2008 Amber Waves publication from the USDA, Economic Research Service, provides new insight to rural definitions with an article,"Defining the “Rural” in Rural America: The use of different definitions of rural by Federal agencies reflects the multidimensional qualities of rural America." http://www.ers.usda.gov/AmberWaves/June08/Features/RuralAmerica.htm

The General Accounting Office, in its publication Rural Development: Profile of Rural Areas, http://archive.gao.gov/t2pbat6/149199.pdf, pp. 26-31, discusses the three most common Federal definitions of rural: that of the Department of Commerce's Bureau of the Census based on the 1990 census criteria (now superceded by the 2000 census criteria), http://www.census.gov/geo/www/ua/ua_2k.html, that of the White House's Office of Management and Budget, and that of the Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service. "Metro/urban areas can be defined using several criteria. Once this is done, nonmetro/rural is then defined by exclusion -- any area that is not metro/urban is nonmetro/rural. Determining the criteria used has a great impact on the resulting classification of areas as metro/ nonmetro or urban/rural. The Census Bureau classifies 61.7 million (25 percent) of the total population as rural, OMB classifies 55.9 million (23 percent) of the total population as nonmetro. According to the Census definition, 97.5 percent of the total U.S. land area is rural; according to the OMB definition, 84 percent of the land area is nonmetropolitan. USDA/ERS estimates that, in 1990, 43 percent of the rural population lived in metropolitan counties.

A further problem with dichotomous definitions is that they permit classification into only two categories -- metro/urban or nonmetro/rural. This cannot describe the metro/nonmetro continuum or the range of variation that exists in nonmetro areas. ERS attempts to overcome this limitation by further subdividing metro/nommetro categories. ... However, as with any definition, any broad generalizations about nonmetro conditions will not necessarily be representative for a subset of those areas.

Last edited by macjr82; 01-26-2011 at 09:47 AM..
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