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Price Dispersion in the Housing Market: The Role of Bargaining and Search Costs


  • Gaetano Lisi

    () (University of Cassino - Creativity and Motivations (CreaM) Economic Center)


This paper develops a matching model à la Pissarides (2000) in order to explain a basic fact of housing markets: price dispersion. The variance in house prices is basically due to both the ex-ante heterogeneity of the parties (i.e., bargaining power, tastes, asymmetric information) and the search costs of buyers and sellers. In fact, sellers and buyers spend time and money before concluding the deal. Furthermore, the house price is substantially determined by bargaining between the parties. These factors affect the selling price and lead to price dispersion. This simple theoretical model is able to take these distinctive features of the housing markets into account.

Suggested Citation

  • Gaetano Lisi, 2011. "Price Dispersion in the Housing Market: The Role of Bargaining and Search Costs," Working Papers hal-00628323, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-00628323
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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Genesove, David & Han, Lu, 2012. "Search and matching in the housing market," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 31-45.
    2. Gabriel, Stuart A. & Shack-Marquez, Janice & Wascher, William L., 1992. "Regional house-price dispersion and interregional migration," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 235-256, September.
    3. C. Y. Yiu & K. F. Man & S. K. Wong, 2008. "Trading Volume and Price Dispersion in Housing Markets," Journal of Property Research, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(3), pages 203-219, December.
    4. Charles Leung & Youngman Leong & Siu Wong, 2006. "Housing Price Dispersion: An Empirical Investigation," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 32(3), pages 357-385, May.
    5. Tristan-Pierre Maury & Fabien Tripier, 2010. "Strategies for search on the housing market and their implications for price dispersion," Working Papers hal-00480484, HAL.
    6. Gaetano Lisi, 2011. "The Hedonic Price Function in a Matching Model of Housing Market," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 31(3), pages 2347-2355.
    7. John P. Harding & John R. Knight & C.F. Sirmans, 2003. "Estimating Bargaining Effects in Hedonic Models: Evidence from the Housing Market," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 31(4), pages 601-622, December.
    8. James Albrecht & Axel Anderson & Eric Smith & Susan Vroman, 2007. "Opportunistic Matching In The Housing Market," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(2), pages 641-664, May.
    9. Quan, Daniel C & Quigley, John M, 1991. "Price Formation and the Appraisal Function in Real Estate Markets," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 127-146, June.
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