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Determinants and Consequences of Moving Decisions for Older Homeowners

Author

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  • Calvo, Esteban
  • Haverstick, Kelly
  • Zhivan, Natalia

Abstract

The lore on whether older Americans move is mixed. While the familiar stereotype is that retirees flock to Florida or Arizona, prior studies have found that their home equity rises modestly over time, suggesting that they tend to stay put. This paper examines moving trends, determinants, and consequences using the original cohort of the Health and Retirement Study (HRS). We find that a full 30 percent of homeowners in the HRS cohort move over the 1992-2004 period, but most moves occur close to home. Overall,two types of movers emerge from the analysis – those who affirmatively plan to move and those who react to changing circumstances. As proxies for these two types, this study uses the presence or absence of a negative shock, such as death of a spouse or entry into a nursing home. Our results show that the factors that help determine a move are similar for both groups, while the consequences of a move vary. Homeowners with shocks are more likely to discontinue homeownership and reduce net equity, supporting the hypothesis that households may view housing wealth as insurance against catastrophic events. Finally, while movers in both groups of homeowners experience improvements in psychological well-being, movers with shocks are impacted most by the shocks themselves.

Suggested Citation

  • Calvo, Esteban & Haverstick, Kelly & Zhivan, Natalia, 2009. "Determinants and Consequences of Moving Decisions for Older Homeowners," MPRA Paper 48964, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:48964
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jonathan D. Fisher & David S. Johnson & Joseph T. Marchand & Timothy M. Smeeding & Barbara Boyle Torrey, 2007. "No Place Like Home: Older Adults and Their Housing," Journals of Gerontology: Series B, Gerontological Society of America, vol. 62(2), pages 120-128.
    2. James Banks & Richard Blundell & Zoë Oldfield & James P. Smith, 2010. "Housing Price Volatility and Downsizing in Later Life," NBER Chapters,in: Research Findings in the Economics of Aging, pages 337-379 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Katharine Anderson & Eric French & Tina Lam, 2004. "You can't take it with you: asset run-down at the end of the life cycle," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q III, pages 40-54.
    4. Shan, Hui, 2010. "Property taxes and elderly mobility," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 194-205, March.
    5. Alicia H. Munnell & Francesca Golub-Sass & Dan Muldoon, 2009. "An Update on 401(k) Plans: Insights From the 2007 SCF," Issues in Brief ib2009-9-5, Center for Retirement Research, revised Mar 2009.
    6. Farnham, Martin & Sevak, Purvi, 2006. "State fiscal institutions and empty-nest migration: Are Tiebout voters hobbled?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(3), pages 407-427, February.
    7. David A. Wise, 2004. "Introduction to "Perspectives on the Economics of Aging"," NBER Chapters,in: Perspectives on the Economics of Aging, pages 1-16 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. David A. Wise, 2004. "Perspectives on the Economics of Aging," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number wise04-1, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Calvo, Esteban & Haverstick, Kelly & Zhivan, Natalia, 2009. "Older Americans on the Go: Financial and Psychological Effects of Moving," MPRA Paper 48965, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Kelly Haverstick & Natalia A. Zhivan, 2009. "Older Americans On The Go: How Often, Where, and Why?," Issues in Brief ib2009-9-18, Center for Retirement Research, revised Sep 2009.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Old age; moving determinants; older homeowners; well-being;

    JEL classification:

    • Y90 - Miscellaneous Categories - - Other - - - Other

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