U.S. House Prices: The Role of Fundamentals
Lewis T. Evans
Victoria University of Wellington - New Zealand Institute for Study of Competition and Regulation Inc. (ISCR)
Victoria University of Wellington - School of Economics & Finance
April 24, 2012
This paper uses a competitive-equilibrium housing-market model to evaluate the role that interest rates played in the U.S. housing boom and bust. The model features stochastic construction costs, disposable income, interest rates, and population, and endogenously determines the supply of developed land and house prices. It is calibrated separately to 95 cities and data on the four state variables alone are used to calculate house prices implied by fundamentals for each city. Actual prices during 1995-2010 closely match the predicted prices implied by observed changes in the four state variables and reasonably small perceived changes in the long-run average levels of interest rates and demand growth rates.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 33
Keywords: housing markets, rational prices, bubbles, real options
JEL Classification: R31, E22, G12, D51working papers series
Date posted: May 27, 2011 ; Last revised: April 24, 2012
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