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Foreclosure Externalities and Vacant Property Registration Ordinances

Author

Listed:
  • Arnab Biswas
  • Chris Cunningham
  • Kristopher S. Gerardi
  • Daniel Sexton

Abstract

This paper tests the effectiveness of vacant property registration ordinances (VPROs) in reducing negative externalities from foreclosures. VPROs were widely adopted by local governments across the United States during the foreclosure crisis and facilitated the monitoring and enforcement of existing property maintenance laws. We implement a border discontinuity design combined with a triple-difference specification to overcome policy endogeneity concerns, and we find that the enactment of VPROs in Florida more than halved the negative externality from foreclosure. This finding is robust to a rich set of time-by-location fixed effects, limiting the sample to properties within 0.1 miles of a VPRO/non-VPRO border and to a number of other sample restrictions and falsification exercises. The results suggest that an important driver of the negative price effect of nearby foreclosures is a non-pecuniary externality where the failure to maintain or secure a property affects one's neighbors.

Suggested Citation

  • Arnab Biswas & Chris Cunningham & Kristopher S. Gerardi & Daniel Sexton, 2019. "Foreclosure Externalities and Vacant Property Registration Ordinances," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2019-20, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedawp:2019-20
    DOI: 10.29338/wp2019-20
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    File URL: https://www.frbatlanta.org/-/media/documents/research/publications/wp/2019/11/19/foreclosure-externalities-and-vacant-property-registration-ordinances.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lynn M. Fisher & Lauren Lambie-Hanson & Paul Willen, 2015. "The Role of Proximity in Foreclosure Externalities: Evidence from Condominiums," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 7(1), pages 119-140, February.
    2. William H. Rogers & William Winter, 2009. "The Impact of Foreclosures on Neighboring Housing Sales," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 31(4), pages 455-480.
    3. Gerardi, Kristopher & Lambie-Hanson, Lauren & Willen, Paul S., 2013. "Do borrower rights improve borrower outcomes? Evidence from the foreclosure process," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 1-17.
    4. W. Scott Frame, 2010. "Estimating the effect of mortgage foreclosures on nearby property values: a critical review of the literature," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, vol. 95(3).
    5. Biswas, Arnab, 2012. "Housing submarkets and the impacts of foreclosures on property prices," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 235-245.
    6. Zhenguo Lin & Eric Rosenblatt & Vincent Yao, 2009. "Spillover Effects of Foreclosures on Neighborhood Property Values," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 38(4), pages 387-407, May.
    7. Elliot Anenberg & Edward Kung, 2014. "Estimates of the Size and Source of Price Declines Due to Nearby Foreclosures," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(8), pages 2527-2551, August.
    8. Schuetz, Jenny & Been, Vicki & Ellen, Ingrid Gould, 2008. "Neighborhood effects of concentrated mortgage foreclosures," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 306-319, December.
    9. Harding, John P. & Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Sirmans, C.F., 2007. "Depreciation of housing capital, maintenance, and house price inflation: Estimates from a repeat sales model," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 193-217, March.
    10. John Y. Campbell & Stefano Giglio & Parag Pathak, 2011. "Forced Sales and House Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 2108-2131, August.
    11. Larry Cordell & Liang Geng & Laurie S. Goodman & Lidan Yang, 2015. "The Cost of Foreclosure Delay," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 43(4), pages 916-956, November.
    12. Gerardi, Kristopher & Rosenblatt, Eric & Willen, Paul S. & Yao, Vincent, 2015. "Foreclosure externalities: New evidence," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 42-56.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    foreclosure; policy; externality; vacancy; mortgage default; diversity;

    JEL classification:

    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
    • K25 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Real Estate Law
    • R28 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Government Policy
    • R52 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Land Use and Other Regulations

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