Moving House

47 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2015

See all articles by Rachel Ngai

Rachel Ngai

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Economics; Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - HKUST School of Business and Management

Kevin Daniel Sheedy

London School of Economics

Date Written: January 2015

Abstract

Using data on house sales and inventories of unsold houses, this paper shows that changes in sales volume are largely explained by changes in the frequency at which houses are put up for sale rather than changes in the length of time taken to sell them. Thus the decision to move house is key to understanding the volume of sales. This paper builds a model where homeowners chose when to move house, which can be seen as an investment in housing match quality. Since moving house is an investment with upfront costs and potentially long-lasting benefits, the model predicts that the aggregate moving rate depends on macroeconomic variables such as interest rates. The endogeneity of moving also means that those who move come from the bottom of the existing match quality distribution, which gives rise to a cleansing effect and leads to overshooting of housing-market variables.

Keywords: endogenous moving, housing market, match quality investment, search and matching

JEL Classification: D83, E22, R21, R31

Suggested Citation

Ngai, Liwa Rachel and Sheedy, Kevin Daniel, Moving House (January 2015). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP10346. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2554420

Liwa Rachel Ngai (Contact Author)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Economics ( email )

Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom
+44 207 955 7017 (Phone)
+44 207 831 1840 (Fax)

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - HKUST School of Business and Management ( email )

Clear Water Bay
Kowloon
Hong Kong

Kevin Daniel Sheedy

London School of Economics ( email )

Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom
+44 207 107 5022 (Phone)
+44 207 955 6592 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://personal.lse.ac.uk/sheedy/

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