Race, Land Use Regulation, and Housing Affordability

34 Pages Posted: 12 Jul 2018

See all articles by Christopher A. Wheeler

Christopher A. Wheeler

New Jersey Department of Community Affairs

Paul A. Jargowsky


Date Written: June 19, 2018


Previous studies have examined the link between land-use regulation and home prices extensively. Yet there are few studies that examine the influence of land-use regulation on housing affordability. Even more uncommon is a focus on the effects of specific types of regulation on individual households, and variations in these effects by racial and ethnic group. Using a cross-sectional regression design analyzing existing Wharton Residential Land Use Regulation Survey data, land use regulation survey data developed by Pendall, Puentes, and Martin (2006), and American Community Survey data, this article estimates the impact of various kinds of exclusionary land use regulation on individual housing affordability by housing tenure and race. We find that mobile home bans have powerful and consistent effects on owner affordability. Affordability for African Americans is especially harmed by multi-family development limits and for Hispanics by restrictions on the pace of housing construction.

Keywords: housing affordability, land use regulations, race/ethnicity

JEL Classification: R31, R38, R52

Suggested Citation

Wheeler, Christopher A. and Jargowsky, Paul A., Race, Land Use Regulation, and Housing Affordability (June 19, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3199298 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3199298

Christopher A. Wheeler

New Jersey Department of Community Affairs ( email )

101 S Broad St.
Trenton, NJ 08608
United States

Paul A. Jargowsky (Contact Author)

Rutgers-Camden ( email )

Camden, NJ 08102
United States

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