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Demand for Urban Quality of Living in China: Evolution in Compensating Land-Rent and Wage-Rate Differentials


  • Siqi Zheng


  • Yuming Fu


  • Hongyu Liu



The rapid pace of urbanization and income growth in China in the past decade, spurred in part by the liberalization of the urban housing and labor markets, resulted in considerable growth in urban land rents and wage-rates. The objective of this study is to examine the influence of urban quality of living, comprising social and environmental amenities, on the evolution of cross-city land-rent and wage-rate differentials in China. We employ the household data from the 1998 and 2004 Urban Household Survey (UHS) to compute the intercity land-rent and wage-rate differentials, inferring the rent growth in individual cities from a household housing consumption demand equation as home values were not reported in the earlier UHS. Our findings show a strong increase of urban residents’ willingness to pay for local amenity qualities between 1998 and 2004. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Suggested Citation

  • Siqi Zheng & Yuming Fu & Hongyu Liu, 2009. "Demand for Urban Quality of Living in China: Evolution in Compensating Land-Rent and Wage-Rate Differentials," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 194-213, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jrefec:v:38:y:2009:i:3:p:194-213 DOI: 10.1007/s11146-008-9152-0

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Weizeng Sun & Siqi Zheng & Yuming Fu, 2016. "Local Public Service Provision and Spatial Inequality in Chinese Cities," ERSA conference papers ersa16p799, European Regional Science Association.
    2. Norbert Hiller & Oliver Lerbs, 2015. "The capitalization of non-market attributes into regional housing rents and wages: evidence on German functional labor market areas," Review of Regional Research: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft, Springer;Gesellschaft für Regionalforschung (GfR), vol. 35(1), pages 49-72, February.
    3. Li, Lixing & Wu, Xiaoyu, 2014. "Housing price and entrepreneurship in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 436-449.
    4. Gang-Zhi Fan & Zsuzsa R. Huszar & Weina Zhang, 2016. "The Helping Hand of the State in Chinese Real Estate Firms: Anti-corruption and Liberalization," International Real Estate Review, Asian Real Estate Society, vol. 19(1), pages 51-97.
    5. Rafael González-Val, 2011. "What makes cities bigger and richer? New Evidence from 1990–2000 in the US," ERSA conference papers ersa11p325, European Regional Science Association.
    6. Dan S. Rickman, 2014. "Assessing Regional Quality of Life: A Call for Action in Regional Science," The Review of Regional Studies, Southern Regional Science Association, vol. 44(1), pages 1-12, Spring.
    7. González-Val, Rafael & Olmo, Jose, 2010. "A Statistical Test of City Growth: Location, Increasing Returns and Random Growth," MPRA Paper 27139, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Zheng, Siqi & Kahn, Matthew E. & Liu, Hongyu, 2010. "Towards a system of open cities in China: Home prices, FDI flows and air quality in 35 major cities," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 1-10, January.
    9. Huang, Daisy J. & Leung, Charles K. & Qu, Baozhi, 2015. "Do bank loans and local amenities explain Chinese urban house prices?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 19-38.
    10. Rafael González-Val, 2015. "Cross-sectional growth in US cities from 1990 to 2000," Journal of Geographical Systems, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 83-106, January.
    11. Rafael González-Val & Jose Olmo, 2015. "Growth in a Cross-section of Cities: Location, Increasing Returns or Random Growth?," Spatial Economic Analysis, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(2), pages 230-261, June.
    12. Zhang, Min & Partridge, Mark & Song, Huasheng, 2018. "Amenities and Geography of Innovation: Evidence from Chinese Cities," MPRA Paper 83673, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Siqi Zheng & Matthew E. Kahn, 2013. "Understanding China's Urban Pollution Dynamics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(3), pages 731-772, September.
    14. Agarwal, Sumit & Rengarajan, Satyanarain & Sing, Tien Foo & Yang, Yang, 2016. "School allocation rules and housing prices: A quasi-experiment with school relocation events in Singapore," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 42-56.


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