The Mortgage Piggy Bank: Building Wealth through Amortization
64 Pages Posted: 30 Apr 2020 Last revised: 10 Mar 2021
Date Written: March 2021
Mortgage amortization schedules are illiquid savings plans comparable in size to pension programs; however, little is known about their effects on wealth accumulation. Using individual administrative data and plausibly exogenous variation in the timing of home purchase (ex. childbirth-driven) around a 2013 Dutch reform, we find a near one-for-one rise in net worth for each dollar of amortization. Households leave other savings and liabilities unchanged, and instead increase labor supply and reduce consumption. Effects hold even for regular savers and older households. This has important macroprudential implications and suggests homeownership financed via amortizing mortgages is instrumental for household wealth building.
Keywords: Mortgage, Amortization, Wealth, Fungibility, Homeownership, Macroprudential policies
JEL Classification: G4, G5, G19, G21, G51, J3, R2
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation