The Private Neighborhood
7 Pages Posted: 25 Jul 2004
In 2004, more than 17 percent of all Americans belonged to a homeowners or condominium association, or were part of a cooperative. This privatizing of the American neighborhood represents a fundamental development in the history both of local government and of property rights in the United States. The rise of private neighborhoods, as Steven Spiegel wrote in a 1998 law journal article, is achieving "a large-scale, but piecemeal and incremental, privatization of local government." I propose to expand this privatization by establishing a legal mechanism by which an existing neighborhood could create a private neighborhood association. It would be similar to the incorporation of a new municipality, but it would result in the creation of a private neighborhood based on a private property relationship among the property owners of the neighborhood.
Keywords: Homeowners association, property rights, private neighborhoods, associations, regulation, cooperative, condominium, municipality, rights of entry, zoning, property
JEL Classification: R52, R31
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation