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Why Has Home Ownership Fallen Among The Young?

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  • Jonas D. M. Fisher
  • Martin Gervais

Abstract

We document that home ownership of households with "heads" aged 25 - 44 years fell substantially between 1980 and 2000 and recovered only partially during the 2001-2005 housing boom. The 1980-2000 decline in young home ownership occurred as improvements in mortgage opportunities made it easier to purchase a home. This paper uses an equilibrium life-cycle model calibrated to micro and macro evidence to understand why young home ownership fell over a period when it became easier to own a home. Our findings indicate that a trend toward marrying later and the increase in household earnings risk that occurred after 1980 account for 3/5 to 4/5 of the decline in young home ownership.
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Suggested Citation

  • Jonas D. M. Fisher & Martin Gervais, 2011. "Why Has Home Ownership Fallen Among The Young?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 52(3), pages 883-912, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:ier:iecrev:v:52:y:2011:i:3:p:883-912 DOI: j.1468-2354.2011.00653.x
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    Cited by:

    1. Gervais, Martin & Mennuni, Alessandro, 2015. "Optimal fiscal policy in the neoclassical growth model revisited," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 1-17.
    2. Roine Vestman, 2013. "Limited Stock Market Participation Among Renters and Home Owners," 2013 Meeting Papers 549, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Silvio Rendon & Nuria Quella, 2013. "Behind the Great Recession: Job Search and Housing Decisions," Department of Economics Working Papers 13-03, Stony Brook University, Department of Economics.
    4. Jonathan Halket & Santhanagopalan Vasudev, 2014. "Saving Up or Settling Down: Home Ownership over the Life Cycle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 17(2), pages 345-366, April.
    5. Anagnostopoulos, Alexis & Atesagaoglu, Orhan Erem & Carceles-Poveda, Eva, 2013. "Skill-biased technological change and homeownership," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 3012-3033.
    6. Timothy A. Wunder, 2016. "Setting a Principal to Interest Cap on the Issuance of Home Mortgages: a Proposed Change to Mortgage Underwriting Rules Designed to Control Housing Price Inflation," World Economic Review, World Economics Association, vol. 2016(6), pages 1-86, February.
    7. repec:esx:essedp:718 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:esx:essedp:712 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Halket, Jonathan R & Vasudev, Santhanagopalan, 2012. "Home Ownership, Savings, and Mobility Over The Life Cycle," Economics Discussion Papers 2876, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
    10. Orazio Attanasio & Renata Bottazzi & Hamish Low & Lars Nesheim & Matthew Wakefield, 2012. "Modelling the Demand for Housing over the Lifecycle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 15(1), pages 1-18, January.
    11. Amior, Michael & Halket, Jonathan R, 2012. "Do Households Use Homeownership To Insure Themselves? Evidence Across U.S. Cities," Economics Discussion Papers 8963, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
    12. Davis, Morris A. & Van Nieuwerburgh, Stijn, 2015. "Housing, Finance, and the Macroeconomy," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, Elsevier.
    13. John Simon & Tahlee Stone, 2017. "The Property Ladder after the Financial Crisis: The First Step is a Stretch but Those Who Make It Are Doing OK," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2017-05, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    14. Agarwal, Sumit & Hu, Luojia & Huang, Xing, 2013. "Rushing into American Dream? House Prices, Timing of Homeownership, and Adjustment of Consumer Credit," Working Paper Series WP-2013-13, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    15. Tomura, Hajime, 2013. "Heterogeneous beliefs and housing-market boom-bust cycles," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 735-755.
    16. Halket, Jonathan & Pignatti Morano di Custoza, Matteo, 2015. "Homeownership and the scarcity of rentals," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 107-123.
    17. Sommer, Kamila, 2016. "Fertility choice in a life cycle model with idiosyncratic uninsurable earnings risk," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 27-38.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E0 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General
    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • R21 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Housing Demand

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