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Empirical application of the housing-market no-arbitrage condition: problems, solutions and a Finnish case study

  • Elias Oikarinen

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Turku School of Economics)

The often used housing price-to-income and housing price-to-rent ratios are problematic in housing market analysis and may result in misleading conclusions. Instead, the no-arbitrage condition of housing market is a theoretically sound basis to evaluate if housing prices are misaligned. Unfortunately, empirical applica-tion of the no-arbitrage condition has notable complications. This article reviews these complications and suggests some solutions to them. The use of implied expected appreciation derived from the no-arbitrage condition is recommended. It is also claimed that the real appreciation is better to use than the nominal one in the no-arbitrage computations. Furthermore, the paper shows that the maintenance costs as a fraction of housing price vary substantially in time and location, which may significantly affect the equilibrium housing price level relative to rental prices. An empirical application of the no-arbitrage relation using data from ten Finnish cities shows that housing price level in 2007 was not based on high expected appreciation. This lowers the fears for a price bubble.

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Paper provided by Aboa Centre for Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 39.

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Length: 30
Date of creation: Oct 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tkk:dpaper:dp39
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  1. Todd Sinai & Nicholas S. Souleles, 2005. "Owner-Occupied Housing as a Hedge Against Rent Risk," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(2), pages 763-789, May.
  2. Nathalie Girouard & Mike Kennedy & Paul van den Noord & Christophe André, 2006. "Recent House Price Developments: The Role of Fundamentals," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 475, OECD Publishing.
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  5. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko, 2007. "Arbitrage in Housing Markets," NBER Working Papers 13704, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Charles Himmelberg & Christopher Mayer & Todd Sinai, 2005. "Assessing High House Prices: Bubbles, Fundamentals and Misperceptions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(4), pages 67-92, Fall.
  7. François Ortalo-Magné & Sven Rady, 2002. "Housing Market Dynamics: On the Contribution of Income Shocks and Credit Constraints," Wisconsin-Madison CULER working papers 02-01, University of Wisconsin Center for Urban Land Economic Research.
  8. Andrea Finicelli, 2007. "House price developments and fundamentals in the United States," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 7, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  9. Quigley, John M. & Raphael, Steven, 2004. "Is Housing Unaffordable? Why Isn't It More Affordable?," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt1vp9j3k0, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
  10. Davis, Morris & Heathcote, Jonathan, 2005. "The Price and Quantity of Residential Land in the United States," CEPR Discussion Papers 5333, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Linneman, Peter, 1985. "An economic analysis of the homeownership decision," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 230-246, March.
  12. DiPasquale Denise & Wheaton William C., 1994. "Housing Market Dynamics and the Future of Housing Prices," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 1-27, January.
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  14. Henderson, J Vernon & Ioannides, Yannis M, 1983. "A Model of Housing Tenure Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 98-113, March.
  15. Englund, P. & Hendershott, P.H. & Turner, B., 1995. "The Tax Reform and the Housing Market," Papers 20, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
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