How Private Water Companies Can Help Increase Property Values

While the connection between investment in water infrastructure and increased property values is not often detailed, key third parties, including the Urban Land Institute and PricewaterhouseCoopers[1] and the U.S. EPA[2], find a significant correlation between the two.

By examining the relationship between the number of Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) violations and property values, researchers find evidence that water issues, such as drinking water “pollutions” or infrastructure problems, impact the local economy and can significantly decrease property values.[3]

It’s simple: the fewer the number of EPA violations, the more protection for the value of your home.

Through the SDWA, the EPA sets standards for the quality of drinking water for all water utilities. Water systems operated by private companies have significantly fewer violations than those operated by the government. One analysis of EPA data found that government-operated water systems are 24% more likely to incur health violations of the SDWA than privately-operated water systems.[4]

When it comes to compliance with the SDWA, major private water utilities have fewer EPA violations, fines or work orders. A 10-year analysis of EPA data by American Water Intelligence found that privately-owned and operated water utilities have a stellar record with far fewer SDWA enforcement actions than public utilities.[5]

The numbers paint a clear picture that as private water companies provide reliable and safe water and wastewater service every day to more than 73 million Americans, they are also helping increase property values in communities and towns across the country.

[1] PricewaterhouseCoopers and Urban Land Institute, “Emerging Trends in Real Estate: United States and Canada” January 2015
[2] United States Environmental Protection Agency, “Working Paper: The Property Value Impacts of Groundwater Contamination: Agricultural Runoff and Private Wells” November 2015
[3] The Nature Conservancy Long Island, “The Dollars and Sense of Investing in Clean Water” March 2017
[4] David Konisky, Georgetown University, and Manny Teodoro, Texas A&M University, “When Governments Regulate Governments” November 2014
[5] American Water Intelligence, “Investor-Owned Water Firms Boast Sterling SDWA Record” October 2011


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