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Owning versus leasing: do courts matter?

  • Pablo Casas-Arce
  • Albert Saiz

The authors develop a legal contract enforcement theory of the own versus lease decision. The allocation of ownership rights will minimize enforcement costs when the legal system is inefficient. In particular, when legal enforcement of contracts is costly, there will be a shift from arrangements that rely on such enforcement (such as a rental agreement) toward other forms that do not (such as direct ownership). The authors then test this prediction and show that costly enforcement of rental contracts hampers the development of the rental housing market in a cross-section of countries. They argue that this association is not the result of reverse causation from a developed rental market to more investor-protective enforcement and is not driven by alternative institutional channels. The results provide supportive evidence on the importance of legal contract enforcement for market development and the optimal allocation of property rights.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia in its series Working Papers with number 06-21.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:06-21
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  1. Michiel van Leuvensteijn & Pierre Koning, 2006. "The Effect of Home-Ownership on Labour Mobility in the Netherlands," Chapters, in: Labour Market Adjustments in Europe, chapter 6 Edward Elgar Publishing.
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  7. Ortalo-Magne, Francois & Rady, Sven, 2002. "Tenure choice and the riskiness of non-housing consumption," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 266-279, September.
  8. Michael Svarer & Michael Rosholm & Jacob Roland Munch, 2003. "Are Home Owners Really more Unemployed?," CAM Working Papers 2003-09, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics. Centre for Applied Microeconometrics.
  9. Bergman, Nittai & Nicolaievsky, Daniel, 2004. "Investor Protection and the Coasian View," Working papers 4476-04, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  10. Maria Concetta Chiuri & Tullio Jappelli, 2000. "Financial Market Imperfections and Home Ownership: A Comparative Study," CSEF Working Papers 44, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy, revised 01 Dec 2000.
  11. Rafael LaPorta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert Vishny, . "The Quality of Government," Working Paper 19452, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  12. François Ortalo-Magné & Sven Rady, 2005. "Heterogeneity within Communities: A Stochastic Model with Tenure Choice," CESifo Working Paper Series 1465, CESifo Group Munich.
  13. Franks, Julian R & Mayer, Colin & Rossi, Stefano, 2003. "The Origination and Evolution of Ownership and Control," CEPR Discussion Papers 3822, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Malpezzi, S. & Ball, G., 1992. "Rent Control in Developing Countries," World Bank - Discussion Papers 129, World Bank.
  17. Etienne Wasmer, 2005. "Housing market discrimination, housing regulations and intermediaries," Post-Print hal-01053551, HAL.
  18. Simeon Djankov & Caralee McLiesh & Andrei Shleifer, 2005. "Private Credit in 129 Countries," NBER Working Papers 11078, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert Vishny, 1999. "Investor Protection and Corporate Valuation," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1882, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  20. Gyourko, Joseph & Linneman, Peter, 1996. "Analysis of the Changing Influences on Traditional Households' Ownership Patterns," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 318-341, May.
  21. Oswald Andrew J., 1996. "A Conjecture on the Explanation for High Unemployment in the Industrialized Nations : Part I," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 475, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  22. Carole Brunet & Jean-Yves Lesueur, 2003. "Le Statut Résidentiel Affecte-t-il la Durée de Chômage ? Estimation microéconométrique de l'hypothèse d'Oswald sur données françaises," Post-Print halshs-00178544, HAL.
  23. Klein, Benjamin & Crawford, Robert G & Alchian, Armen A, 1978. "Vertical Integration, Appropriable Rents, and the Competitive Contracting Process," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 297-326, October.
  24. Peter Linneman & Susan Wachter, 1989. "The Impacts of Borrowing Constraints on Homeownership," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 17(4), pages 389-402.
  25. Botero, J. C. & Djankov, S. & Porta, R. L. & Lopez-de-Silanes, F. & Shleifer, Andrei, 2004. "The Regulation of Labor," Scholarly Articles 27867241, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  26. Todd Sinai & Nicholas S. Souleles, 2003. "Owner-Occupied Housing as a Hedge Against Rent Risk," NBER Working Papers 9462, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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