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Elderly Health, Housing, and Mobility

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  • Jonathan S. Feinstein

Abstract

I construct dynamic economic models which focus on an elderly person's decision whether to move in response to changes in his or her health status. The models specify three health states (good, moderately disabled, and poor), three matching housing states (conventional, transitional, and institutional), and explicitly include several different kinds of mobility costs, including the direct utility costs, the indirect health effects of mobility, and, in the more complex model, financial transaction costs. The first model I present examines elderly mobility in a simple environment in which utility depends only on the match between housing and health, and a bequest. The second model extends the first to incorporate housing prices, household wealth, and elderly consumption decisions. Extensive simulations of the two models show that both predict considerable mobility, even when mobility costs are large. The results also highlight the importance of transitional housing, and provide evidence on the relationship between housing, mobility, household wealth, and consumption.

Suggested Citation

  • Jonathan S. Feinstein, 1993. "Elderly Health, Housing, and Mobility," NBER Working Papers 4572, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4572
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jonathan S. Feinstein & Edward G. Keating, 1992. "An Economic Analysis of Life Care," NBER Working Papers 4155, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Steven F. Venti & David A. Wise, 1989. "Aging, Moving, and Housing Wealth," NBER Chapters,in: The Economics of Aging, pages 9-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Steven F. Venti & David A. Wise, 1990. "But They Don't Want to Reduce Housing Equity," NBER Chapters,in: Issues in the Economics of Aging, pages 13-32 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Alan M. Garber & Thomas E. MaCurdy, 1989. "Predicting Nursing Home Utilization Among the High-Risk Elderly," NBER Working Papers 2843, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Chunrong Ai & Jonathan Feinstein & Daniel L. McFadden & Henry Pollakowski, 1990. "The Dynamics of Housing Demand by the Elderly: User Cost Effects," NBER Chapters,in: Issues in the Economics of Aging, pages 33-88 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Viscusi, W Kip & Evans, William N, 1990. "Utility Functions That Depend on Health Status: Estimates and Economic Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 353-374, June.
    7. Louise Sheiner & David N. Weil, 1992. "The Housing Wealth of the Aged," NBER Working Papers 4115, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Hurd, Michael D, 1990. "Research on the Elderly: Economic Status, Retirement, and Consumption and Saving," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 28(2), pages 565-637, June.
    9. Jonathan Feinstein & Daniel McFadden, 1989. "The Dynamics of Housing Demand by the Elderly: Wealth, Cash Flow, and Demographic Effects," NBER Chapters,in: The Economics of Aging, pages 55-92 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. repec:hoo:wpaper:e-89-1 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Torrance, George W., 1986. "Measurement of health state utilities for economic appraisal : A review," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 1-30, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eriksen, Michael D. & Greenhalgh-Stanley, Nadia & Engelhardt, Gary V., 2015. "Home safety, accessibility, and elderly health: Evidence from falls," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 14-24.
    2. Lina Walker, 2004. "Elderly Households and Housing Wealth: Do They Use It or Lose It?," Working Papers wp070, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.

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