IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/juecon/v44y1998i1p135-157.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Intergenerational Transfers, Borrowing Constraints, and Saving Behavior: Evidence from the Housing Market

Author

Listed:
  • Engelhardt, Gary V.
  • Mayer, Christopher J.

Abstract

This paper examines the effects of intergenerational transfers on saving behavior by examining private wealth transfers targeted toward first-time home purchases. The study of transfer behavior in the housing market is advantageous for a number of reasons: the down payment requirement associated with home purchase can be thought of as an important, well-defined borrowing constraint that most U.S. households face; private wealth transfers targeted to home purchases are significant; and home equity is a highly important component of household wealth in the United States. The empirical analysis shows that transfer recipients have a saving rate that is lower than that of non-recipients by as much as 6 percentage points, representing a reduction of 39 to 49 percent in the household saving rate. In addition, households that receive transfers reduce the time required to save for the down payment by 22 percent. For each dollar of transfer received, households increase the dollar amount of the down payment by about 85 cents, allowing them to achieve a higher down payment threshold. Households also increase the value of the home purchased upon receiving a transfer, but by an amount that is much lower than would be possible if the transfer were fully leveraged. The amount of the transfer appears to be targeted to help households achieve certain down payment thresholds that give favorable terms on mortgages. Although the evidence suggests that the availability of a transfer reduces household savings, we cannot reject the alternative hypothesis that transfer recipients are inherently low savers.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Engelhardt, Gary V. & Mayer, Christopher J., 1998. "Intergenerational Transfers, Borrowing Constraints, and Saving Behavior: Evidence from the Housing Market," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 135-157, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:44:y:1998:i:1:p:135-157
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0094-1190(97)92064-7
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Douglas Holtz-Eakin & David Joulfaian & Harvey S. Rosen, 1993. "The Carnegie Conjecture: Some Empirical Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(2), pages 413-435.
    2. Peter Linneman & Susan Wachter, 1989. "The Impacts of Borrowing Constraints on Homeownership," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 17(4), pages 389-402.
    3. Christopher J. Mayer & Katerina V. Simons, 1994. "A new look at reverse mortgages: potential market and institutional constraints," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Mar, pages 15-26.
    4. William G. Gale & John Karl Scholz, 1994. "Intergenerational Transfers and the Accumulation of Wealth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 145-160, Fall.
    5. Sewin Chan, 1995. "Residential Mobility and Mortgages," NBER Working Papers 5181, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. David N. Weil, 1994. "The Saving of the Elderly in Micro and Macro Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(1), pages 55-81.
    7. Jones Lawrence D., 1995. "Testing the Central Prediction of Housing Tenure Transition Models," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 50-73, July.
    8. Modigliani, Franco, 1988. "The Role of Intergenerational Transfers and Life Cycle Saving in the Accumulation of Wealth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 15-40, Spring.
    9. Mark B. Stewart, 1983. "On Least Squares Estimation when the Dependent Variable is Grouped," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 737-753.
    10. Barry Bosworth & Gary Burtless & John Sabelhaus, 1991. "The Decline in Saving: Evidence from Household Surveys," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 22(1), pages 183-256.
    11. Cox, Donald & Jappelli, Tullio, 1990. "Credit Rationing and Private Transfers: Evidence from Survey Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(3), pages 445-454, August.
    12. Peter M. Zorn, 1989. "Mobility-Tenure Decisions and Financial Credit: Do Mortgage Qualification Requirements Constrain Homeownership?," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 17(1), pages 1-16.
    13. Engelhardt, Gary V., 1996. "House prices and home owner saving behavior," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3-4), pages 313-336, June.
    14. Gary V. Engelhardt & Christopher J. Mayer, 1994. "Gifts for home purchase and housing market behavior," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue May, pages 47-58.
    15. Donald Cox, 1990. "Intergenerational Transfers and Liquidity Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(1), pages 187-217.
    16. Jaffee, Dwight & Stiglitz, Joseph, 1990. "Credit rationing," Handbook of Monetary Economics,in: B. M. Friedman & F. H. Hahn (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 16, pages 837-888 Elsevier.
    17. Poterba, James M & Venti, Steven F & Wise, David A, 1994. "Targeted Retirement Saving and the Net Worth of Elderly Americans," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 180-185, May.
    18. Henderson, J Vernon & Ioannides, Yannis M, 1983. "A Model of Housing Tenure Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 98-113, March.
    19. Munnell, Alicia H. & Geoffrey M. B. Tootell & Lynn E. Browne & James McEneaney, 1996. "Mortgage Lending in Boston: Interpreting HMDA Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 25-53, March.
    20. Brueckner, Jan K., 1986. "The downpayment constraint and housing tenure choice : A simplified exposition," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 519-525, November.
    21. Kotlikoff, Laurence J, 1988. "Intergenerational Transfers and Savings," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 41-58, Spring.
    22. Engelhardt Gary V., 1994. "House Prices and the Decision to Save for Down Payments," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 209-237, September.
    23. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio, 1991. "Intergenerational transfers and capital market imperfections : Evidence from a cross-section of Italian households," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 103-120, January.
    24. Gary V. Engelhardt, 1995. "House Prices and Home Owner Saving Behavior," NBER Working Papers 5183, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Sheiner Louise, 1995. "Housing Prices and the Savings of Renters," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 94-125, July.
    26. Brueckner Jan K., 1994. "Borrower Mobility, Adverse Selection, and Mortgage Points," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 416-441, September.
    27. Plaut, Steven E., 1987. "The timing of housing tenure transition," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 312-322, May.
    28. Artle, Roland & Varaiya, Pravin, 1978. "Life cycle consumption and homeownership," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 38-58, June.
    29. Engelhardt, Gary V, 1996. "Consumption, Down Payments, and Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 28(2), pages 255-271, May.
    30. Chan, Sewin, 1996. "Residential mobility and mortgages," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3-4), pages 287-311, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:44:y:1998:i:1:p:135-157. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622905 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.