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What's in a Grade? School Report Cards and the Housing Market

  • David N. Figlio
  • Maurice E. Lucas

This paper investigates whether the housing market responds to the information incorporated in state-administered school grades. We study whether school grades affect families' residential locations and house prices. Using detailed data on repeated sales of individual residential properties in the state of Florida, we find evidence that there is an independent effect of these grades on house prices and residential location, above and beyond the estimated effects of test scores and the other components of the school grades. Because these grades have a large stochastic component, however, we find that over time the estimated effects of the grades has diminished.

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Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 94 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (June)
Pages: 591-604

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:94:y:2004:i:3:p:591-604
Note: DOI: 10.1257/0002828041464489
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  1. Bradbury, Katharine L. & Mayer, Christopher J. & Case, Karl E., 2001. "Property tax limits, local fiscal behavior, and property values: evidence from Massachusetts under Proposition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 287-311, May.
  2. Sandra E. Black, 1997. "Do better schools matter? Parental valuation of elementary education," Research Paper 9729, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  3. David N. Figlio & Marianne E. Page, 2003. "Can School Choice and School Accountability Successfully Coexist?," NBER Chapters, in: The Economics of School Choice, pages 49-66 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Moulton, Brent R, 1990. "An Illustration of a Pitfall in Estimating the Effects of Aggregate Variables on Micro Unit," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(2), pages 334-38, May.
  5. Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2002. "How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?," NBER Working Papers 8841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Bogart, William T. & Cromwell, Brian A., 1997. "How Much More is a Good School District Worth?," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 50(2), pages 215-32, June.
  7. Kathy J. Hayes & Lori L. Taylor, 1996. "Neighborhood school characteristics: what signals quality to homebuyers?," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Q IV, pages 2-9.
  8. David N. Figlio & Maurice E. Lucas, 2000. "What's in a Grade? School Report Cards and House Prices," NBER Working Papers 8019, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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