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Home Price Beliefs in Australia

  • Callan Windsor

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

  • Gianni La Cava

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

  • James Hansen

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

Registered author(s):

    We document some new stylised facts about how Australian homeowners value their homes using household panel data and unit-record data on home sale prices. We find that homeowners' price beliefs are unbiased at the postcode level, on average, although there is considerable dispersion in the difference between beliefs and prices across postcodes. Household characteristics, such as age and tenure, and the regional unemployment rate are correlated with differences between beliefs and prices. We also find evidence that the difference between beliefs and prices has explanatory power for average household consumption, leverage and portfolio decisions after controlling for the market-inferred value of the home. These facts provide empirical evidence to support recent literature on the importance of belief formation for household decision-making.

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    File URL: http://www.rba.gov.au/publications/rdp/2014/pdf/rdp2014-04.pdf
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    Paper provided by Reserve Bank of Australia in its series RBA Research Discussion Papers with number rdp2014-04.

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    Date of creation: May 2014
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    Handle: RePEc:rba:rbardp:rdp2014-04
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    Web page: http://www.rba.gov.au/Email:


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    1. Bidder, R.M. & Smith, M.E., 2012. "Robust animal spirits," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(8), pages 738-750.
    2. Brunnermeier, Markus K & Gollier, Christian & Parker, Jonathan A, 2007. "Optimal Beliefs, Asset Prices and the Preference for Skewed Returns," CEPR Discussion Papers 6181, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Larry G. Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2008. "Ambiguity, Information Quality, and Asset Pricing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 63(1), pages 197-228, 02.
    4. Sumit Agarwal, 2007. "The Impact of Homeowners' Housing Wealth Misestimation on Consumption and Saving Decisions," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 35(2), pages 135-154, 06.
    5. Laura Berger-Thomson & Elaine Chung & Rebecca McKibbin, 2009. "Estimating Marginal Propensities to Consume in Australia Using Micro Data," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2009-07, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    6. Callan Windsor & Jarkko Jääskelä & Richard Finlay, 2013. "Home Prices and Household Spending," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2013-04, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    7. James Hansen, 2009. "Australian House Prices: A Comparison of Hedonic and Repeat-Sales Measures," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 85(269), pages 132-145, 06.
    8. Orazio P. Attanasio & Laura Blow & Robert Hamilton & Andrew Leicester, 2009. "Booms and Busts: Consumption, House Prices and Expectations," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 76(301), pages 20-50, 02.
    9. Thomas J. Sargent & Riccardo Colacito & Lars P. Hansen & Timothy Cogley, 2008. "Robustness and US Monetary," 2008 Meeting Papers 228, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    10. Katherine A. Kiel & Jeffrey E. Zabel, 1999. "The Accuracy of Owner-Provided House Values: The 1978-1991 American Housing Survey," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 27(2), pages 263-298.
    11. Genesove, David & Mayer, Christopher, 2001. "Loss Aversion and Seller Behaviour: Evidence from the Housing Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 2813, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    12. Marion Kohler & Kylie Smith, 2005. "Housing and the Household Wealth Portfolio: The Role of Location," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2005-10, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    13. Goodman, John Jr. & Ittner, John B., 1992. "The accuracy of home owners' estimates of house value," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 339-357, December.
    14. Ihlanfeldt, Keith R. & Martinez-Vazquez, Jorge, 1986. "Alternative value estimates of owner-occupied housing: Evidence on sample selection bias and systematic errors," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 356-369, November.
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