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The Boston Globe

Ideas

Uncommon Knowledge

4? Uh-oh. How the address can change your house’s value

And more surprising insights from the social sciences

Wealth address vs. death address

If you’re in the market for a house in a diverse city like Boston, it helps to know the superstitions of local ethnic groups. An analysis of home sales in Vancouver revealed that home addresses can be worth a fortune. “Given a mean nominal house price of about CAD$400,000 over the sample period, we have found that in neighborhoods where the percentage of ethnic Chinese residents exceeds the average of 18%, houses with address numbers ending with the ‘death’-ridden ‘4’ are sold at a $8,000 discount and those ending with the ‘wealth’-laden ‘8’ are sold with a $10,000 premium in comparison to houses with address numbers ending with any other digit.”

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