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Housing busts and household mobility

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  • Ferreira, Fernando
  • Gyourko, Joseph
  • Tracy, Joseph

Abstract

Using two decades of American Housing Survey data from 1985 to 2007, we revisit the literature on lock-in effects and provide new estimates of the impacts of negative equity and rising interest rates on the mobility of owners. Both lead to substantially lower mobility rates. Owners suffering from negative equity are one-third less mobile, and every added $1000 in real annual mortgage costs lowers mobility by about 12%. Our results cannot simply be extrapolated to the future, but they do have potentially important implications for policy makers concerned about the consequences of the housing bust that began as our data series ended. In particular, they indicate that we need to begin considering the consequences of lock-in and reduced household mobility because they are quite different from those associated with default and higher mobility.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 68 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (July)
Pages: 34-45

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Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:68:y:2010:i:1:p:34-45

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622905

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Keywords: Household mobility Negative equity Mortgage lock-in;

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References

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  1. Orley Ashenfelter & Alan Krueger, 1992. "Estimates of the Economic Return to Schooling from a New Sample of Twins," Working Papers 683, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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  3. Fernando Ferreira, 2008. "You Can Take it With You: Proposition 13 Tax Benefits, Residential Mobility, and Willingness to Pay for Housing Amenities," Working Papers 08-15, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
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  8. Andrew Haughwout & Richard Peach & Joseph Tracy, 2008. "Juvenile delinquent mortgages: bad credit or bad economy?," Staff Reports 341, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  9. Gyourko, Joseph & Saiz, Albert, 2004. "Reinvestment in the housing stock: the role of construction costs and the supply side," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 238-256, March.
  10. Deng, Yongheng & Quigley, John M. & Van Order, Robert, 1999. "Mortgage Terminations, Heterogeneity, and the Exercise of Mortgage Options," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt96r560pg, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
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  16. Engelhardt, Gary V., 2003. "Nominal loss aversion, housing equity constraints, and household mobility: evidence from the United States," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 171-195, January.
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