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Property taxation, bounded rationality and housing prices

Author

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  • Elinder, Mikael

    () (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies)

  • Persson, Lovisa

    () (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies)

Abstract

In 2008, the Swedish property tax was reformed and a cap on yearly tax liabilities was introduced. A large fraction of owner occupied houses was subject to a substantial decrease in the tax. When the reform was announced, most analysts projected - in line with tax capitalization theory - that the tax decrease would lead to significant increases in house prices. We estimate price responses and capitalization degrees, using various DID strategies, in which the price dynamics of houses that were subject to a generous tax reduction are compared to the price dynamics of houses with a more modest reduction. Our results are largely inconsistent with capitalization theory. For the majority of properties, we find no evidence that the tax cut led to increases in house prices. However, we nd evidence of partial capitalization in sub-markets with highly valued properties, highly educated citizens and were it is especially dicult to increase supply. We argue that theories of bounded rationality can help explain why house buyers may fail to take a tax decrease into account in the valuation of houses.

Suggested Citation

  • Elinder, Mikael & Persson, Lovisa, 2014. "Property taxation, bounded rationality and housing prices," Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies 2014:6, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:uufswp:2014_006
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    announcement effects; capitalization; financial literacy; housing market; inattention; saliency;

    JEL classification:

    • D01 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D04 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Policy: Formulation; Implementation; Evaluation
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence
    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • R21 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Housing Demand
    • R38 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Government Policy

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