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The Anatomy of Rent Burdens: Immigration, Growth and Rental Housing

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  • Greulich, Erica
  • Quigley, John M.
  • Raphael, Steven

Abstract

This paper assesses whether growth in the immigrant population over the past two decades has adversely affected the housing consumption opportunities of native renter households. We find that the monthly housing expenses of native renters are higher in metropolitan areas with larger immigrant populations. However, these marginal effects are comparable for both native households in direct competition with immigrants and native households that are unlikely to compete with immigrants in the housing market. Moreover, while average native rents increase as the proportion immigrant increases within a given metropolitan area, the same is not true for rent-to-income ratios. We do find that native households in metropolitan areas with large immigrant populations consume fewer rooms and are relatively more likely to reside in crowded conditions. This result holds in an analysis of cross-sectional variation as well as the analysis of changes within metropolitan areas. However, there is little evidence that these effects are larger for those native households who are likely to be in competition for housing with immigrant households.

Suggested Citation

  • Greulich, Erica & Quigley, John M. & Raphael, Steven, 2005. "The Anatomy of Rent Burdens: Immigration, Growth and Rental Housing," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt63t3t356, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdl:bphupl:qt63t3t356
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Abdel-Rahman, Hesham M. & Anas, Alex, 2004. "Theories of systems of cities," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics,in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 52, pages 2293-2339 Elsevier.
    2. John Michael Quigley, 1972. "An Economic Model of Swedish Emigration," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 86(1), pages 111-126.
    3. Borjas, George J & Freeman, Richard B & Katz, Lawrence, 1996. "Searching for the Effect of Immigration on the Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 246-251, May.
    4. Albert Saiz, 2003. "Room in the Kitchen for the Melting Pot: Immigration and Rental Prices," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 502-521, August.
    5. John M. Quigley & Steven Raphael, 2004. "Is Housing Unaffordable? Why Isn't It More Affordable?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(1), pages 191-214, Winter.
    6. Fujita, Masahisa & Krugman, Paul & Mori, Tomoya, 1999. "On the evolution of hierarchical urban systems1," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 209-251, February.
    7. Randall Filer, 1992. "The Effect of Immigrant Arrivals on Migratory Patterns of Native Workers," NBER Chapters,in: Immigration and the Workforce: Economic Consequences for the United States and Source Areas, pages 245-270 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Libertad Gonzalez & Francesc Ortega, 2013. "Immigration And Housing Booms: Evidence From Spain," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(1), pages 37-59, February.
    2. Matlack, Janna L. & Vigdor, Jacob L., 2008. "Do rising tides lift all prices? Income inequality and housing affordability," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 212-224, September.
    3. Steven Stillman & David C. Maré, 2008. "Housing Markets and Migration: Evidence from New Zealand," Working Papers 08_06, Motu Economic and Public Policy Research.
    4. Kathrin Degen & Andreas Fischer, 2017. "Immigration and Swiss House Prices," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 153(I), pages 15-36, March.
    5. Quigley, John M. & Rosenthal, Larry A., 2005. "The Effects of Land-Use Regulation on the Price of Housing: What Do We Know? What Can We Learn?," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt90m9g90w, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
    6. Fischer, Andreas M., 2012. "Immigrant language barriers and house prices," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 389-395.

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