I've been doing a lot of research on chicken-keeping in Greater Cincinnati over the past few weeks since the City of Montgomery proposed an ordinance prohibiting 'farm animals' (including a few backyard chickens) on lots of less than three acres. As I'm hard pressed to think of even a single noncommercial property of three acres that isn't city-owned, this effectively will prohibit residents from keeping backyard chickens.
As one of the key issues for a lot of folks seems to be whether or not chicken-keeping will hurt property values, I started there. Here's what I've found:
Communities which allow chicken-keeping tend to have HIGHER property values than those that prohibit it.Here's the data (please do call any mistakes to my attention -- this is the best I could determine from various communities' ordinances as posted online):
|Suburb||Chicken-Keeping Ordinances*||2007 Average Home Sales Price**|
|Terrace Park||Generally Permit||$ 400K|
|Wyoming||Generally Permit||$ 326K|
|Symmes Township||Permit||$ 313K|
|Montgomery||Generally Permit (currently)||$ 297K|
|Evendale||Generally Permit||$ 288K|
|Glendale||Generally Permit||$ 274K|
|Mason||Essentially Prohibit||$ 213K|
|Madeira||Generally Permit||$ 212K|
|Blue Ash||Case by Case***||$ 202K|
|Loveland||Generally Permit||$ 174K|
|Fairfield||Essentially Prohibit||$ 166K|
|Sycamore Township||Essentially Prohibit||$ 165K|
|Milford||Generally Permit||$ 152K|
|Springdale||Essentially Prohibit||$ 144K|
|Deer Park||Generally Permit||$ 130K|
|Silverton||Essentially Prohibit||$ 127K|
|St Bernard||Generally Permit||$ 124K|
|Mt Healthy||Essentially Prohibit||$ 116K|
** Source: city-data.com
*** Blue Ash requires "suburban farms" practicing "poultry husbandry" to have at least five acres, but they don't define "poultry husbandry." The city compliance inspector I asked about this said that a few backyard chickens would likely be handled on a case-by-case basis if there were complaints.
Now, I'd never use this data to argue that keeping chickens actually raises property values, but it certainly doesn't prove the opposite, either.
Montgomery is giving their proposed ordinance its second of three required public readings at tomorrow's meeting (Wednesday June 3, 7:00, 10101 Montgomery Rd) if anyone would like to attend, if only to provide evidence that I'm not just the Crazy Chicken Lady of Montgomery. The last meeting I attended started right on time and ended at 7:35, so there's not a huge time commitment to showing your support for suburban chicken-keeping!