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Home Voters, House Prices, and the Political Economy of Zoning

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  • Dascher, Kristof

Abstract

One explanation of the recent real estate bubble might point to homeowners' artificially restricting housing supply. While empirical work has not found unequivocal evidence in support of this hypothesis, homeowners may well be restricting supply nonetheless, and without this restriction manifesting itself in a simple -- or even partial -- positive correlation between homeownership and rent. Three points emphasized in this paper's model cloud the relationship between homeownership and rent observed in the data. First, rent rises diffuse across cities. Second, homeowners may only wish to impose restrictions to supply if tenants are not few. And third, homeowners may negotiate supply restrictions in neighboring tenant-dominated cities, giving rise to homeowner-tenant coalitions in non-obvious ways. -- The paper's empirical part tests the model against a data set that combines micro data on homeowners and rents with information on East Germany's large scale demolition, with this demolition interpreted as one striking instance of zoning.

Suggested Citation

  • Dascher, Kristof, 2012. "Home Voters, House Prices, and the Political Economy of Zoning," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62069, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc12:62069
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    File URL: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/62069/1/VfS_2012_pid_1019.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Fischel, William A., 1980. "Zoning and the exercise of monopoly power: A reevaluation," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 283-293, November.
    2. Kristof Dascher, 2000. "Trade, FDI, and congestion - the small and very open economy," Working Papers 200009, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
    3. Glaeser, Edward L. & Ward, Bryce A., 2009. "The causes and consequences of land use regulation: Evidence from Greater Boston," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(3), pages 265-278, May.
    4. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko, "undated". "The Impact of Zoning on Housing Affordability," Zell/Lurie Center Working Papers 395, Wharton School Samuel Zell and Robert Lurie Real Estate Center, University of Pennsylvania.
    5. Calabrese, Stephen & Epple, Dennis & Romano, Richard, 2007. "On the political economy of zoning," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 25-49, February.
    6. Hilber, Christian A.L. & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2013. "On the origins of land use regulations: Theory and evidence from US metro areas," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 29-43.
    7. Magliocca, Nicholas & McConnell, Virginia & Walls, Margaret & Safirova, Elena, 2012. "Zoning on the urban fringe: Results from a new approach to modeling land and housing markets," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 198-210.
    8. Oswald Andrew J., 1996. "A Conjecture on the Explanation for High Unemployment in the Industrialized Nations : Part I," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 475, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
    9. Quigley, John M. & Rosenthal, Larry A., 2005. "The Effects of Land-Use Regulation on the Price of Housing: What Do We Know? What Can We Learn?," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt90m9g90w, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
    10. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko & Raven Saks, 2003. "Why is Manhattan So Expensive? Regulation and the Rise in House Prices," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2020, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    11. Brueckner, Jan K., 1998. "Testing for Strategic Interaction Among Local Governments: The Case of Growth Controls," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 438-467, November.
    12. DiPasquale, Denise & Glaeser, Edward L., 1999. "Incentives and Social Capital: Are Homeowners Better Citizens?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 354-384, March.
    13. Hamilton, Bruce W., 1978. "Zoning and the exercise of monopoly power," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 116-130, January.
    14. Sweeney, James L, 1974. "Quality, Commodity Hierarchies, and Housing Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 42(1), pages 147-167, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Kristof Dascher, 2014. "Federal coordination of local housing demolition in the presence of filtering and migration," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 21(3), pages 375-396, June.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • R31 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Housing Supply and Markets
    • H73 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Interjurisdictional Differentials and Their Effects
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior

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