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Old 10-09-2011, 02:51 AM
 
33,016 posts, read 27,458,643 times
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I view rent control and zoning as opposite sides of the same regulatory coin.

Zoning was created and is advocated by property owners to protect incumbent property owners and is not concerned with interests or concerns of potential newcomers. Zoning seeks to prevent market outcomes not desired by incumbent property owners. Zoning regulates the supply of various land uses in a community.

Rent control was created and is advocated by renters (non-owners) to protect incumbent renters and is not concerned with interests or concerns of potential newcomers. Rent control seeks to prevent market outcomes not desired by incumbent renters. Rent control regulates the price of a specific land use (housing) in a community.

So if rent control is bad, why is zoning considered good and even desirable? Why do many conservatives who say that government should not pick winners and losers...endorse zoning which picks winners and losers?
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Old 10-09-2011, 03:31 AM
 
Location: Old Bellevue, WA
18,782 posts, read 17,360,856 times
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I think the simple answer is that zoning in theory could be useful to address externalities. For example, do you want a dirt-bike racetrack next to your Buddhist meditation center? Rent control does not do that.

But I question the premise that price controls generally have a poor reputation. The minimum wage is nothing more than a price control, yet enjoys widespread popular support, especially from the best and brightest in DC, and the East Coast hyper-educated media. When Dick Durbin recently pushed thru swipe fee controls at the behest of WalMart, all the PR grief went to those who opposed the price control.
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Old 10-09-2011, 06:29 AM
 
Location: Sale Creek, TN
4,882 posts, read 5,014,802 times
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Why is rent control good, while zoning is bad? Why should any government be able to tell anyone what you can charge for rent? Why should any government allow anyone to do what that want with their property? Just the flip-side to the question
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Old 10-09-2011, 06:36 AM
 
Location: Hoboken
19,890 posts, read 18,752,619 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freemkt View Post
I view rent control and zoning as opposite sides of the same regulatory coin.

Zoning was created and is advocated by property owners to protect incumbent property owners and is not concerned with interests or concerns of potential newcomers. Zoning seeks to prevent market outcomes not desired by incumbent property owners. Zoning regulates the supply of various land uses in a community.

Rent control was created and is advocated by renters (non-owners) to protect incumbent renters and is not concerned with interests or concerns of potential newcomers. Rent control seeks to prevent market outcomes not desired by incumbent renters. Rent control regulates the price of a specific land use (housing) in a community.

So if rent control is bad, why is zoning considered good and even desirable? Why do many conservatives who say that government should not pick winners and losers...endorse zoning which picks winners and losers?
Your understanding of zoning is faulty. Its purpose is to maintain quality of life for folks living in a given area. Of course rental properties are governed by zoning laws. Renters in an apartment building would no more want a waste recycling plant opened next to their apartments than would owners.

Additionally zoning laws to not take from one group and give to another, as rent control laws clearly do.
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:43 AM
 
Location: Maryland
18,630 posts, read 19,418,524 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freemkt View Post
I view rent control and zoning as opposite sides of the same regulatory coin.

Zoning was created and is advocated by property owners to protect incumbent property owners and is not concerned with interests or concerns of potential newcomers. Zoning seeks to prevent market outcomes not desired by incumbent property owners. Zoning regulates the supply of various land uses in a community.

Rent control was created and is advocated by renters (non-owners) to protect incumbent renters and is not concerned with interests or concerns of potential newcomers. Rent control seeks to prevent market outcomes not desired by incumbent renters. Rent control regulates the price of a specific land use (housing) in a community.

So if rent control is bad, why is zoning considered good and even desirable? Why do many conservatives who say that government should not pick winners and losers...endorse zoning which picks winners and losers?
You should read up on the aftermath of the San Fran earthquake in 1906 and how quickly the city rebuilt its housing stock.

Basic economics: a citizen's guide ... - Thomas Sowell - Google Books
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Old 10-09-2011, 09:34 AM
 
4,399 posts, read 10,671,195 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shorebaby View Post
Your understanding of zoning is faulty. Its purpose is to maintain quality of life for folks living in a given area. Of course rental properties are governed by zoning laws. Renters in an apartment building would no more want a waste recycling plant opened next to their apartments than would owners.

Additionally zoning laws to not take from one group and give to another, as rent control laws clearly do.
Zoning laws are very broad, to broad to make a comparison with to rent control, but many zoning laws is meant to protect one set of property owners at the expense of another or a renter. The comparison is valid for many zoning regulations.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:09 AM
 
Location: Paranoid State
13,044 posts, read 13,867,365 times
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George Stigler won the Nobel Prize in economics in 1982 (George Stigler - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) for his work demonstrating, among other things, that much governmental regulation exists to protect the regulated industries rather than to protect society at large.

One example he used in class was regulation of the tobacco industry to remove TV advertising of cigarettes. At the time, the press focused on Congressional hearings where various experts said that TV advertising of cigarettes unduly influenced children, and ultimately laws were passed banning TV advertising of cigarettes beginning the day after the Superbowl in 1969 (or was it '68?).

Behind the scenes, however, the tobacco industry realized that the only way to effectively launch a new brand was with massive TV advertising expenditures -- which changed the size of each brand's "slice of the pie" but didn't really increase "the size of the pie." Moreover TV advertising was game-theoretic: existing brands had to advertise to protect their share even though it didn't increase the overall market.

So Tobacco companies lobbied to end TV advertising of cigarettes. They used words like "socially responsible" and "children" and formed alliances with mothers groups and physicians groups to end TV advertising, but when you look at actual financial performance, profit margins & profits went up immediately after the ban.

By the way, the TV networks lobbied against the ban. :-)

When it comes to land zoning, it is pretty clear that similar forces are at work.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:14 AM
 
23,974 posts, read 15,082,290 times
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Rent control in NYC went in during the war. If the landlords were against it, they would get rid of it.
Some states only raise property taxes when the property changes hands. That is clearly making newcomers pay more for services than folks who have been given the house by their parents. When we moved to another state, the neighbors on either side of us had been in their houses since they were children. We paid way more property tax than they did.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:56 AM
 
Location: NC
9,984 posts, read 10,392,719 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shorebaby View Post
Your understanding of zoning is faulty. Its purpose is to maintain quality of life for folks living in a given area. Of course rental properties are governed by zoning laws. Renters in an apartment building would no more want a waste recycling plant opened next to their apartments than would owners.

Additionally zoning laws to not take from one group and give to another, as rent control laws clearly do.
Zoning laws absolutely take from one group and give to another. When an area is zoned it often prevents certain property owners from getting what had previously been the highest and best use of their land since they are now limited in what they can do, and it does this to protect the value of neighboring pieces of property. The reason they are good is because they protect people's expectations when they buy into property.
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:24 PM
 
13,005 posts, read 18,908,288 times
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Did you ever notice how locally unacceptable land uses seem to go right at the City Limit? That means most of the present or future residents can't vote against it.
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