Refinancing Cross-Subsidies in the Mortgage Market
82 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2021 Last revised: 25 Apr 2023
Date Written: April 21, 2023
In household finance markets, inactive households can implicitly cross-subsidize active households who promptly respond to financial incentives. We assess the magnitude and distribution of cross-subsidies in the mortgage market. To do so, we build a model of household mortgage refinancing and structurally estimate it on rich administrative data on the stock of outstanding UK mortgages. We estimate sizeable cross-subsidies during this sample period, from relatively poorer households and those located in less-wealthy areas towards richer households and those located in wealthier areas. Our work highlights how the design of household finance markets can contribute to wealth inequality.
Keywords: Mortgages, refinancing, cross-subsidies, wealth inequality, household inaction, household finance, inertia
JEL Classification: G21, G50, N20, R21, R31, L51, D63
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation