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Heterogeneity within Communities: A Stochastic Model with Tenure Choice

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  • Ortalo-Magné, François
  • Rady, Sven

Abstract

Standard explanations for the income heterogeneity within neighborhoods rely on differences of preferences across households and heterogeneity of the housing stock. We propose an alternative and complementary explanation. We construct a stochastic equilibrium sorting model where (1) income is the sole dimension of household heterogeneity, (2) households form state-contingent housing location plans that may involve moves over their lifetimes, (3) households choose whether to own or rent depending on the housing expenditure risk associated with each tenure mode, and (4) there is a probability that newcomer households move in and compete for homes with native households. Income mixing within neighborhood arises for two reasons. First, allowing natives to form state-contingent housing location plans breaks the indivisibility of housing consumption implicit in the literature where households choose their location once and for all. Second, natives can insure themselves against rent fluctuations by buying their home prior to the realization of the population shock; newcomers cannot. As a result, poorer natives stay in the more desirable communities and only richer newcomers move in these communities. Evidence from U.S. metropolitan areas supports the effects predicted by the model.

Suggested Citation

  • Ortalo-Magné, François & Rady, Sven, 2005. "Heterogeneity within Communities: A Stochastic Model with Tenure Choice," Discussion Papers in Economics 594, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lmu:muenec:594
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Basant K. Kapur, 2016. "Another Look At Price Instability And Consumer Well-Being: Nondurable And Durable (Housing) Markets," The Singapore Economic Review (SER), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 61(02), pages 1-9, June.
    2. Patrick Bayer & Robert McMillan & Alvin Murphy & Christopher Timmins, 2011. "A Dynamic Model of Demand for Houses and Neighborhoods," NBER Working Papers 17250, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Haavio, Markus & Kauppi, Heikki, 2009. "House price fluctuations and residential sorting," Research Discussion Papers 14/2009, Bank of Finland.
    4. Pablo Casas-Arce & Albert Saiz, 2006. "Owning versus leasing: do courts matter?," Working Papers 06-21, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
    5. François Ortalo-Magné & Andrea Prat, 2005. "The Political Economy of Housing Supply," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000000954, UCLA Department of Economics.
    6. Gonzales-Eiras, Martín & Niepelt, Dirk, 2004. "Sustaining Social Security," Seminar Papers 731, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
    7. Joseph Gyourko & Christopher Mayer & Todd Sinai, 2013. "Superstar Cities," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 5(4), pages 167-199, November.
    8. Morrison, Nicola & Szumilo, Nikodem, 2019. "Universities’ global research ambitions and their localised effects," Land Use Policy, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 290-301.
    9. Patrick Bayer & Robert McMillan & Alvin Murphy & Christopher Timmins, 2016. "A Dynamic Model of Demand for Houses and Neighborhoods," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 84, pages 893-942, May.
    10. Hilber, Christian A.L. & Liu, Yingchun, 2008. "Explaining the black-white homeownership gap: The role of own wealth, parental externalities and locational preferences," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 152-174, June.
    11. Markus Haavio & Heikki Kauppi, 2006. "House price fluctuations and residential sorting," 2006 Meeting Papers 774, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    12. Dokow, Elad & Luque, Jaime, 2019. "Provision of local public goods in mixed income communities," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 1-1.
    13. Charles Ka Yui Leung, 2015. "Availability, Affordability and Volatility: The Case of the Hong Kong Housing Market," International Real Estate Review, Global Social Science Institute, vol. 18(3), pages 383-428.
    14. Ko, Kate, 2009. "Home Prices and Urban Corridors," 50th Annual Transportation Research Forum, Portland, Oregon, March 16-18, 2009 207607, Transportation Research Forum.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Equilibrium Sorting ; Income Mixing ; Housing Demand ; Tenure Choice;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • R21 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Housing Demand

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