Also by Reinvestment Fund

Market Value Analysis

One of the keys to creating and maintaining vibrant neighborhoods is understanding where and how to invest resources. Since 1985, Reinvestment Fund has been working with the public, nonprofit and private sectors to identify the best investment approaches for improving the quality and value of local real estate markets and, in turn, strengthening communities. Our most effective tool for guiding revitalization strategies is the Market Value Analysis (MVA). We have completed over 40 MVAs for city, county and state governments including Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, PA; New Orleans, LA; Kansas City, MO; Jacksonville, FL; and the state of Delaware.

Using Smart Data to Restore Market Viability

The MVA is a data-based tool to inform community revitalization and manage neighborhood change; it identifies different types of markets, and those places where strategic intervention can stimulate private market activity or capitalize on larger trends. It is a unique approach using spatial and statistical analysis that is field validated and reviewed by local subject matter experts to identify and characterize local conditions throughout a locality, creating an internally-referenced index of residential real estate markets.

The MVA provides stakeholders with a common understanding of market types that allows public, nonprofit, and community organizations to engage in productive dialogue around the creation of a coordinated investment and service-delivery strategy. The MVA also provides a baseline against which community change over time can be measured.

Building from Strength

Our approach to the MVA and its application to policy decisions rests on five assumptions:

  • Scarce public subsidies alone cannot create a market where none exists;
  • Public subsidy must leverage or clear the path for private investment;
  • In distressed markets, interventions should be designed to build from local nodes of strength, (i.e., transportation hubs, parks, public amenities, and anchor institutions);
  • Decisions about places must be informed by good data and objective, rigorous analysis; and
  • All city residents are consumers who expect quality services.

Each MVA is unique. While many studies compare neighborhoods to neighborhoods, the MVA analyzes conditions not only at the community level, but at the block group level. Our experience in cities across the U.S. is that conditions vary significantly within neighborhoods. By looking below traditional neighborhood boundaries, the MVA can highlight market challenges and critical nodes of strength to inform investment strategies.

Market Value Analysis Underway or Complete

Akron, OH
Allegheny County, PA (not including Pittsburgh)
Atlantic City, NJ and all of the towns that physically touch it (e.g., Brigantine, Ventnor, Northfield, Pleasantville and Absecon)
Bethlehem, PA
Camden, NJ
Dallas, TX
Delaware (statewide)
Detroit, MI
Denton, TX
Houston, TX*
Indianapolis, IN
Irving, TX
Jacksonville, FL
Kansas City, MO*
Milwaukee, WI
Mount Vernon, NY
Northampton County, PA
Pittsburgh, PA*
Prince George’s County, MD
Reading, PA
Richmond, VA
San Antonio, TX
Selma, AL
St. Louis, MO*
Washington, DC
Wilmington, DE*
Trenton, NJ (Mercer County)
Washington Township, NJ - Series of towns
Vineland/Millville, NJ
West Orange/East Orange/Orange/South Orange/Maplewood/Irvington/Union/Hillside/Kenilworth/Roselle/Roselle Park, NJ (Referred to as “the Oranges”)
“Riverline” towns between Camden, NJ and Trenton, NJ (but not Camden and Trenton)
The Meadowlands, NJ
The Atlantic Highlands, NJ
* MVAs conducted in multiple years


  • Demographics and Characteristics of Middle Neighborhoods in Select Legacy Cities
    Chapter by Reinvestment Fund’s Ira Goldstein, Bill Schrecker and Jacob Rosch on MVAs in Baltimore, Detroit, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and St. Louis that focuses on the middle markets in each of these cities. This chapter appears in On the Edge: America’s Middle Neighborhoods (edited by Paul Brophy).
  • Making Sense of Markets: Using Data to Guide Reinvestment Strategies
    Chapter on the MVA in What Counts: Harnessing Data for America’s Communities, a book from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and the Urban Institute, outlining opportunities and challenges for the strategic use of data to reduce poverty, improve health, expand access to quality education, and build stronger communities.
  • Targeting Strategies for Neighborhood Development
    Reinvestment Fund’s MVA is highlighted in Evidence Matters, a publication of HUD’s Office of Policy Development and Research, as a helpful tool in targeting scarce public resources for maximum impact.
  • Market Value Analysis: A Data-Based Approach to Understanding Urban Housing Markets
    Chapter on the MVA by Reinvestment Fund’s Ira Goldstein in Putting Data to Work: Data-Driven Approaches to Strengthening Neighborhoods, a publication of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The chapter uses Reinvestment Fund’s MVA for Baltimore as the working example.
  • Maximizing the Impact of Federal NSP Investments through the Strategic Use of Local Market Data
    Chapter by Reinvestment Fund’s Ira Goldstein for the book REO & Vacant Properties: Strategies for Neighborhood Stabilization, a joint publication of the Federal Reserve Banks of Boston and Cleveland and the Federal Reserve Board. Dr. Goldstein’s chapter discusses using the MVA as a means to strategize the targeting of resources under the federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program.
  • Great Neighborhoods Great City: Strategies for the 2010s
    Report by Paul C. Brophy for the Goldseker Foundation that looks at changes in Baltimore’s neighborhoods over the past decade and suggests strategies for going forward. The report suggests using Reinvestment Fund’s MVA for a deeper understanding of local market conditions and developing customized intervention strategies.
  • Market Value Analysis: Understanding Where and How to Invest Limited Resources
    Article by Ira Goldstein and Sean Closkey on Reinvestment Fund’s proprietary tool, the Market Value Analysis (MVA) for Bridges, the quarterly publication of the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank.

Want to learn more about the MVA?

Contact Michael Norton at 215.547.5809 or