Real Estate

Buying a home near power lines/towers?

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  • Aug 5th, 2020 2:43 pm
[OP]
Sr. Member
May 3, 2010
678 posts
334 upvotes

Buying a home near power lines/towers?

So I am considering buying a house that backs into a field with power lines/towers (whatever the right term is). The back yard is big enough that it doesn't immediately end up in the field. The backyard is almost 300 ft deep before the field starts.

I was wondering, in your experiences, if there are any health risks and stigma's in general attached to such houses where resale may be an issue?

Much appreciated!
20 replies
Deal Addict
Feb 19, 2019
1700 posts
2614 upvotes
Stouffville ON
There is some stigma and some people will not buy such properties, in the current market (such as GTA) the property could be backing into hell’s den and it would sell, in a slow market you could expect some discount.
I don’t think there are any proven health effect of living close to the power lines.
With 300 foot back yard I would have no issue buying it for myself, I would prefer it over having neighbours behind.
Last edited by senasena on Jul 29th, 2020 2:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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User avatar
Jan 14, 2007
4491 posts
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GTA
This topic has been discussed a lot on the forums, including just last week. I suggest OP do a search and begin reading through all of the info/opinions.
Member
Dec 12, 2011
203 posts
224 upvotes
Toronto
Yes there is a stigma. Whether it affects anyone's health is highly debatable. Some say there is no ill effects while others swear they're sensitive to the towers and power lines. All I know is that with these properties, whether due to just the perception of danger, there is slightly less of a buying pool, and they are selling a bit cheaper. So if you aren't concerned about any side effects and are only concerned about resale, the money you will "lose" whennselling will be saved when you purchased it.
Sr. Member
Jul 18, 2020
753 posts
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Health impact is a maybe but definitely there will be a price impact.
Jr. Member
Mar 31, 2017
115 posts
71 upvotes
GameChannel wrote: So I am considering buying a house that backs into a field with power lines/towers (whatever the right term is). The back yard is big enough that it doesn't immediately end up in the field. The backyard is almost 300 ft deep before the field starts.

I was wondering, in your experiences, if there are any health risks and stigma's in general attached to such houses where resale may be an issue?

Much appreciated!
There is definitely stigma involved and it will impact your resale value since some people think it negatively affects ones health. Keep in mind your purchase price also reflects this so it should be a wash in the long run.

From a health perspective there is no proven correlation on the hydro fields impacting health. Hydro fields were built above ground in older neighborhoods. If you're in the GTA, how many people who live in Markham or downtown core have the same power lines running underneath their homes and condos without even knowing? Anyone heard of side effects from those people? It's out of sight out of mind. I bet those buyers don't even ask where the power lines are buried when looking in those neighborhoods but scoff their noses when they see above ground ones saying they would never buy a house backing onto a hydro field cause it's dangerous for health.

My backyard directly backs into a hydro field. I love it since I will never have neighbors who can peer into my windows or see that I'm doing in my backyard. The privacy is amazing and we get an amazing breeze during the summer since there are no houses blocking the air flow. Been living in the house for about 25 years and no health issues. Some of our neighbors have been in their homes for even longer and no health issues as well.

Only item to consider is some of your backyard could be considered an easement so hydro could come and tear down your fence/trees/shed in the easement and you have no recourse. Never had that happen personally though.
Jr. Member
Jul 28, 2019
122 posts
53 upvotes
We looked at a house backing onto a field with high tension power lines. The house was gorgeous and in a highly desirable neighbourhood on a crescent with no neighbour in front and only to one side. The price was an absolute steal. However, the crackle/hum of the power lines was disturbing while in the back yard. And the hydro company has an easement that covers most of the back yard so nothing permanent like a pool can be added. FYI a comparable house on the other side of the crescent but no hydro lines in the back is listed at about $100,000 more.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 7, 2007
9133 posts
5018 upvotes
It might be interesting to talk to some people who have lived near power lines. In my experience, these houses are always better than others but listed for cheaper. But, I have also seen these houses come up for sale quite often. It makes me wonder if there is something about those houses that makes people not want to stay very long.
Newbie
Jul 15, 2020
69 posts
51 upvotes
My family and friends i know refuse to buy anything close to power line or rail track. Or 4th floor or 13th floor not because we are superstitious but because it affects resale value.

Thats just us but i know there are lot of ppl who dont care. Just my 2cents
Member
Jun 6, 2014
298 posts
128 upvotes
Toronto, ON
BearBullBear wrote: My family and friends i know refuse to buy anything close to power line or rail track. Or 4th floor or 13th floor not because we are superstitious but because it affects resale value.

Thats just us but i know there are lot of ppl who dont care. Just my 2cents
I wouldn't say it as the people don't care. Like you said, it affects the resale value, so when you buy in, it should be cheaper as well. But it gets you into that particular neighbourhood, building, school district, etc.
Deal Addict
Jan 3, 2007
2965 posts
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Toronto
There are so many houses to choose from, why must you choose one that is near a powerline? That is the question you should be asking yourself.
Member
Jul 4, 2013
216 posts
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Toronto, ON
penguindude wrote: There are so many houses to choose from, why must you choose one that is near a powerline? That is the question you should be asking yourself.
Sometimes the “right” house is in the wrong location. And vice-versa. Not everyone has a bottomless bucket of cash that enables them to buy the perfect house in their most desired location. Some of us have to make concessions and decisions within our means and circumstances.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 7, 2007
9133 posts
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I think the houses near power lines are cheaper and sometimes more attractive to make up for their proximity to power lines. Personally, I wouldn't even consider working in a place close to a strong electromagnetic field but I know it is a matter of personal opinion and/or comfort levels.
Deal Addict
Jul 3, 2007
4033 posts
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Toronto
I saw a beautiful house in pickering sit for weeks at 800k asking price , right behind the powerline alley....

people definitely shy away from these homes but at some point , someone buys because of the price discount....,
Deal Addict
Sep 2, 2009
2320 posts
2355 upvotes
Ottawa
GameChannel wrote: So I am considering buying a house that backs into a field with power lines/towers (whatever the right term is). The back yard is big enough that it doesn't immediately end up in the field. The backyard is almost 300 ft deep before the field starts.

I was wondering, in your experiences, if there are any health risks and stigma's in general attached to such houses where resale may be an issue?

Much appreciated!
Can't add too much more other than: make sure the backyard is actually 300 feet AND without any easements.

While I would buy a house near towers, it would have to be a better house / cheaper than a house elsewhere because of the stigma but also the visual "ugliness" that others may see. There is the bonus though that the potential of them being replaced by a 400-unit apartment/condo building is pretty low.
Deal Addict
Jan 3, 2007
2965 posts
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Toronto
NorthYorkEd wrote: Sometimes the “right” house is in the wrong location. And vice-versa. Not everyone has a bottomless bucket of cash that enables them to buy the perfect house in their most desired location. Some of us have to make concessions and decisions within our means and circumstances.
Nobody said you need to have a bottomless bucket of cash to make a decision to not buy near a powerline. You're twisting my words. I just don't believe one can't find another "right" house when there are so many to choose from, despite what some agents would tell you to close the deal.
Deal Addict
Feb 19, 2019
1700 posts
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Stouffville ON
penguindude wrote: Nobody said you need to have a bottomless bucket of cash to make a decision to not buy near a powerline. You're twisting my words. I just don't believe one can't find another "right" house when there are so many to choose from, despite what some agents would tell you to close the deal.
There aren't many houses to chose from, we have much more demand than supply, any buyer who is in the market to buy a freehold in the GTA can vouch for that, it's difficult time to be a buyer right now, inventory is limited, and compromises are to be made if one wants to buy a property in the current market.
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Jan 3, 2007
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senasena wrote: There aren't many houses to chose from, we have much more demand than supply, any buyer who is in the market to buy a freehold in the GTA can vouch for that, it's difficult time to be a buyer right now, inventory is limited, and compromises are to be made if one wants to buy a property in the current market.
Inventory is limited for now, but in a few months it will bounce back, especially outside of Toronto. Never said there won't be compromises, life is full of compromises - I just don't believe living near a powerline should be one, based on personal experience.
Member
Apr 12, 2009
447 posts
107 upvotes
Way less market for them. I would not personally buy one. What if it is negative for your health and you develop some sort of disease? What if your kids gets sick? I would always have that in the back of my mind. Is your health worth saving some cash$$? Some people think yes, some people (majority based on sales) think no.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 7, 2007
9133 posts
5018 upvotes
Baigle wrote: Way less market for them. I would not personally buy one. What if it is negative for your health and you develop some sort of disease? What if your kids gets sick? I would always have that in the back of my mind. Is your health worth saving some cash$$? Some people think yes, some people (majority based on sales) think no.
I think this is the way many people feel, especially those who have faced catastropic illness in their family and have then looked back wondering if there was something they could have changed in their environment to have avoided the illness in the first place. Personally, as someone who has had someone close to me deal with catastrophic illness AND someone who has a strong background in science, I am very skeptical about pollutants in our environment, especially ones that cannot be physically seen with our own eyes. Our young people are very willing to embrace the technologies offered today like cell phones and wireless devices and while these devices are fun to use, they are also filling our environment with all kinds of pollutants that are not easily seen but are there. As a society we have become more respectful of other things we cannot see with our eyes like bacteria and other microbes (especially since the pandemic) and have become accustomed to hygienic protocols but we haven't yet created an awareness about moderating the invisible wireless radiation in our homes, schools and workplaces although some advocacy groups are working really hard at this. Perhaps most of the population will be unaffected by the radiation in our environment but INTENSITY and DURATION OF EXPOSURE are two things that should be considered when exposing ourselves and people we love to any type of harmful (or potentially harmful) effect in our environment. jmho

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