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Utilizing Informal Household-Work Substitutes along the US-Mexico Border: Evidence from South Texas


  • Michael J. Pisani


Utilizing a unique sample of 357 consumers from South Texas, this paper explores the informal or "off the books" consumption of house-work substitutes. Specifically, two ubiquitous house-work services, house cleaning and yard work, are examined. Regionally, these household maid and gardening services are typically exchanged within an informal cross-border market. As such the determinants of consuming these services are estimated from the perspective of the South Texas borderlands informal consumer. Among the key results, income is an important marker in the ability to consume house-work substitutes where those with more resources are able to pass along house-work duties to others. Hence, informal maid and gardening services are normal goods. Other results and policy considerations are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael J. Pisani, 2014. "Utilizing Informal Household-Work Substitutes along the US-Mexico Border: Evidence from South Texas," Journal of Borderlands Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(3), pages 303-317, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:rjbsxx:v:29:y:2014:i:3:p:303-317
    DOI: 10.1080/08865655.2014.938970

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    Cited by:

    1. Pedro Orraca & Martin Ramirez-Urquidy & Natanael Ramirez, 2017. "Beyond The Local Market: Mexican Cross-Border Entrepreneurs In The United States," Journal of Developmental Entrepreneurship (JDE), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 22(04), pages 1-23, December.
    2. Marysol McGee & Barbara J. Robles, 2016. "Exploring Online and Offline Informal Work : Findings from the Enterprising and Informal Work Activities (EIWA) Survey," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2016-089, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), revised Oct 2016.

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