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Improving the Flexibility of the Dutch Housing Market to Enhance Labour Mobility

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  • Jens Høj
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    Abstract

    The housing market figures among the main determinants of labour mobility, as households seldom make employment and housing decisions independently of each other. This interdependence is likely to strengthen as the cost of commuting increases, due to worsening road congestion or measures that would raise fuel prices, for example to counter global warming. The Dutch housing market is more rigid than in many other OECD countries, as the result of numerous government interventions. Boosting labour mobility by easing rigidities would improve labour resource utilisation, which will be especially important as the labour force contracts with ageing. The rental sector could be made more attractive and flexible by dismantling strict rent regulation and rigid allocation mechanisms in the social housing sector. Lowering tax incentives to homeowners would improve the allocation of scarce capital and reduce house prices. Easing strict land-use and zoning regulation would increase the supply of all types of housing, reducing prices and allowing the housing stock to adjust better to residents’ needs. This Working Paper relates to the 2010 OECD Economic Survey of the Netherlands (www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/ netherlands). Renforcer la flexibilité du marché immobilier néerlandais pour améliorer la mobilité de la main-d'oeuvre Le marché immobilier est l’un des principaux déterminants de la mobilité de la main d’oeuvre, car les ménages prennent rarement de décisions en matière d’emploi et de logement de façon disjointe. Cette interdépendance est vraisemblablement appelée à se renforcer, par suite de la hausse du coût des migrations pendulaires liée à la congestion du réseau routier ou aux mesures renchérissant l’essence, par exemple dans le cadre de la lutte contre le réchauffement climatique. Le marché immobilier néerlandais est plus rigide que dans de nombreux pays de l’OCDE, par suite des nombreuses interventions du gouvernement. Stimuler la mobilité professionnelle en atténuant ces rigidités permettrait d’optimiser l’utilisation des ressources en main d’oeuvre, ce qui serait tout particulièrement important à l’heure où le nombre d’actifs diminue sous l’effet du vieillissement de la population. Le secteur locatif pourrait gagner en attractivité et en souplesse si le strict encadrement des loyers et les mécanismes rigides d’attribution étaient supprimés dans le secteur du logement social. La réduction des aides fiscales accordées aux propriétaires améliorerait l’affectation de ressources limitées et ferait baisser les prix de l’immobilier. L’assouplissement des règles foncières et du zonage entraînerait une hausse de l’offre de logements de tous types, ce qui ferait baisser les prix et permettrait de mieux ajuster le parc immobilier aux besoins de la population. Ce document de travail se rapporte à l’Étude économique des Pays-Bas de 2010 (www.oecd.org/eco/etudes/Pays-Bas).

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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5kgkdgfkxrr2-en
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Economics Department Working Papers with number 833.

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    Date of creation: 17 Jan 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:833-en

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    Related research

    Keywords: housing; labour mobility; rent regulation; social housing; own-occupied housing; logement; logements en accession à la propriété; logement social; mobilité de la main d’oeuvre; réglementation des loyers;

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    Cited by:
    1. World Bank, 2012. "In Search of Opportunities : How a More Mobile Workforce Can Propel Ukraine’s Prosperity (Vol. 2 of 2) : Technical Report," World Bank Other Operational Studies 12287, The World Bank.

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