Housing Finance in Transition Economies: The Early Years in Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union

28 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Bertrand Renaud

Bertrand Renaud

University of California, Berkeley

Date Written: January 1996

Abstract

The evidence from the past five years suggests that the transition economies that achieved low inflation, adopted radical banking reforms, and seriously reformed laws and institutions in the real estate sector should be among the first to develop a modern system of housing finance.

The transition to markets dominates the development agenda of the 1990s. Financial sector reforms are central to a successful transition to a market economy. Renaud focuses on one dimension of these reforms: the development of housing finance institutions and services.

He presents a progress report for the years since 1989, when the road to change opened with the collapse of communist regimes in most countries. Rather than a detailed account of reform in 25 countries, he offers a general framework for analyzing change and evaluating the prospects for rapid development of market-based housing finance systems.

To understand why sound housing finance systems have not yet developed, one must consider factors in four key reform areas: ° The macroeconomic policies adopted to liberalize the economy and stabilize prices. ° Privatization policies, in particular in housing and real estate. ° The strategies adopted - whether by design or by default - to reform the financial sector. ° The nature of the financial priorities and institutional constraints affecting housing finance reform strategies followed in different countries.

Housing finance policy development has been somewhat haphazard in many countries. But the evidence suggests that the transition economies that have achieved low inflation, have adopted radical banking reforms, and seriously reformed and liberalized their real estate sector should be among the first to develop a modern system of housing finance.

This paper - a product of the Financial Sector Development Department - is part of a larger effort in the department to monitor financial development in transition economies.

Suggested Citation

Renaud, Bertrand, Housing Finance in Transition Economies: The Early Years in Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union (January 1996). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 1565. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=604936

Bertrand Renaud (Contact Author)

University of California, Berkeley ( email )

310 Barrows Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States

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