Specialty Grocer Smackdown

Trader Joe's or Whole Foods: Which boosts your property values more?

Trader Joe's or Whole Foods: Which boosts your property values?

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Which beloved grocery chain gives you a better return on your home investment? Photo courtesy of Trader Joe's

Being located near a Trader Joe's or Whole Foods Market is a definite plus, but is one better for property values than the other? A study released by RealtyTrac this week shows that much-loved specialty foods store Trader Joe’s might be doing more than saving you money — it could be making you money.

According to RealtyTrac, homeowners in the same ZIP code as Trader Joe’s stores see their home values increase an average of 40 percent. That’s 6 percent more than the home appreciation national average, 34 percent, which is the same as what being near a Whole Foods will net you. The only downside? Property taxes near Trader Joe's also tend to be higher.

Dallas and Fort Worth residents rejoiced when Trader Joe’s announced plans to come to their respective neighborhoods, bringing with them the store's cult-favorite products and low prices. How did we ever survive without easy access to Speculoos cookie butter and olive oil popcorn?

The California-based chain arrived in the North Texas area in 2012 with a store in Fort Worth, and has since expanded to eight DFW locations, with two more on the way.

The Fort Worth opening sparked a crop of specialty grocery stores popping up all around town. Whole Foods plans to open in the new Waterside development in the spring of 2016, and Fresh Market opened in June in the new Riverside district, following multiple openings in Dallas and Southlake (including this highly anticipated one in Uptown Dallas).

Fresh Market also has two Dallas locations. The opening of Whole Foods ups the count to three specialty foods stores for the 76109 ZIP code near TCU and Colonial Country Club. 

The study looked at 2.3 million homes and compared the average of current home values to the average of home values at the time the home was last purchased in 242 ZIP codes with at least one Trader Joe’s store. Devotees of cookie butter might argue that the higher property taxes are worth it.