What's the impact of Gentrification on shtf-scenarios?

3 posts / 0 new
Last post
kmarinas86's picture
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Dec 29 2008
Posts: 164
What's the impact of Gentrification on shtf-scenarios?

In short, Gentrification is when:

1) A group of relatively high income people move into a low-land value area already inhabited by an existing low-income community.

2) A series of risks develop, including rising home values, eviction of existing low-income community, etc..

3) A series of rewards occur, but mainly for the gentrifiers and city's tax coffers, as property values rise and tax revenue increases.

I have several thoughts about this:

1) It is clear that economic integration, rather than segregation, can increase socioeconomic mobility. Higher socioeconomic mobility can improve overall productivity and income.

2) Economic disintegration tends to create exclusion zones. For example, people who are poor will have less money to spend, but in turn, that means that the people in a "poor only" community will not find very many rich customers to help pay their staff. This causes a sort of wage-price spiral that applies in specific areas of low income.

3) The solution to the problems of gentrification are quite obvious. It should involve making property values linearly depreciable at point of sale. Instead of valuing property on the basis of surroundings, it should be based on the value of the property according to the mortgage minus depreciation. What this will do is allow the pre-existing community to exist in close proximity to the new, higher-income community.

But let's say for now that gentrification continues the way it has done. What happens then?

In a shtf-scenario, we would expect that people who could grow their own food sufficiently for themselves with surplus to satisfy any needy passer-bys would do the best. Such people either have a lot of land, or have invested in equipment that they can use to produce sufficient food in what little land they have. Also, it would be expected that such people have the time to devote to such projects proir to a sthf-scenario. In other words, their socioeconomic condition permits them to take on the task of such self-sufficiency.

Now, when we consider the possibility of communities forming together to make this happen on a community-wide scale, where the self-sufficient unit is just somewhat larger than a household, who is more likely to be a part of such a community, and who is less likely? The obvious factor would be that people who don't live in that community are far, far less likely to be a part of that communities' activity. For example, if you live in a big city with many subdivisions with names such as "Copperfield", "Ridge Oaks", "Mountain Falls", etc. what are the odds that you would participate in any community activities in any of these other subdivisions? What are the odds then that you would participate in such a community if they were in a worse financial shape than you are?

Consider what a relatively poor community would have in terms of money they have to devote to such projects. Alternatively, consider what a relatively young community would have in terms of time they have to devote to such projects. What could we say about young gentrifiers with a lot of income that move-in right next to an older low-income community with a lot of time? Do the relatively older neighbors move out, in seeking for lower property values they can afford, or do they stay, creating a more diverse socioeconomic culture, combining the energy and talent of the young, with the wisdom and principles of the old? Though the age differences will vary between any two such communities, they can be considerably higher if the older community has been there for a very long time. As far as what old communities are impacted by gentrifiers, they seem to impact low-income communities more than medium-income communities.

More critically, we could ask ourselves who do we think will be less prepared for a shtf-scenario. Some would argue that the people who are truly prepared have a lot of land of their own, or are so innovative as to make use of what land they have available to them to such a degree that they could live on it. However, people do move looking for a solution to their problems. They will move to farms when groceries in cities are out of stock. They will move to the homes of neighbors who they have found are able to produce food for themselves. In a shtf-scenario, a lot of people will do this too late, and a lot of prepared people will be inundated with people who are unprepared and just then asking for help. Those who are prepared are then charged with the hefty responsibility of either helping these people by establishing a collective, or choosing not to help them, instead preferring to jealously guard what they consider to be the fruit of their efforts. Can we expect such a community to thrive with sophistication? Or will it end up like the middle-age-esque scenes in the NBC television series Revolution?

Should something be done to encourage the blending of rich, poor, young, and old in the same community before a shtf-scenario? Can this be achieved by changing the economics of property development? Would applying rules of linear depreciation to property values, in addition to transferring tax obligations away from property to consumption, help prevent the negatives of gentrification and help to produce a denser, more efficient form of self-sufficiency that can work in both city and suburban areas?

Don't forget to comment. Suggestions are deeply appreciated.

macro2682's picture
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 3 2009
Posts: 572

If the low income population were able to stay, the gentrification would probably stop. 

maceves's picture
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 23 2010
Posts: 281

I have been watching a church project with great interest.  They beleive that the responsibility of the church is to renew the neighborhood near the church and make it family friendly.  It was a beautiful place to live when it was built, around 1910, after a big fire had consumed the city.  There were lovely large homes and many smaller houses.  As the century progressed, families moved to the suburbs and left the area in a time warp.

Positives-- You can pick up a house for a song, just over the value of the lot itsself.  Some of these homes have intricate details that are labor intensive to produce and not seen anymore.  The lots are flat and generous, and in this case have good river silt that makes good gardens.  Chickens are allowed, though not many people have them.  There are lots of very large nut and fruit trees, especially figs and pecans, that are very productive.  There are two large avenues which are not heavy with traffic, and have large medians that are good for dog walking and daily contitutionals.  There is not much left of downtown, but it is a short walk away--sometimes there are community events, farmers markets, concerts, and fairs and there are lots of restaurants, art galleries, and night spots.  Church members are everywhere.

Negatives-- That cheap house will need a lot of work, probably needing some demolition, new plumbing and electric.  There are guidelines for historic preservation.  Some of them have been squatted in by the homeless, some have been dens for drug dealers, and some have been owned by an elderly person who just let the place go.  The county jail is nearby and it is blocks from the poorest part of town.    Schools are very bad, so families have their kids in private schools.  City government is ineffective.   Many people find it scary.  That random homeless person can give you a big scare, and that addict weaving in the street may give you the creeps.  If you see yourself as a missionary, then there is an opportunity and its not so negative.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Login or Register to post comments