Showing results 1 to 10 of approximately 10.(refine search)
Fracking and Mortgage Default
This paper ?nds that increased hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," along the Marcellus Formation in Pennsylvania had a signi?cant, negative effect on mortgage credit risk. Controlling for potential endogeneity bias by utilizing the underlying geologic properties of the land as instrumental variables for fracking activity, we ?nd that mortgages originated before the 2007 boom in shale gas, were, post-boom, signi?cantly less likely to default in areas with greater drilling activity. The weight of evidence suggests that the greatest bene?t from fracking came from strengthening the labor market, ...
Housing wealth and wage bargaining
We examine the relationship between housing equity and wage earnings. We first provide a simple model of wage bargaining where failure leads to both job loss and mortgage default. Moreover, foreclosure generates disutility beyond selling a home. We test this prediction using nine waves of the national American Housing Survey. Employing a rich set of time and place controls, individual fixed effects, and an instrumental variable strategy, we find that people with an underwater mortgage command a significantly lower wage than other homeowners. This finding survives a number of robustness ...
Foreclosure Externalities and Vacant Property Registration Ordinances
This paper tests the effectiveness of vacant property registration ordinances (VPROs) in reducing negative externalities from foreclosures. VPROs were widely adopted by local governments across the United States during the foreclosure crisis and facilitated the monitoring and enforcement of existing property maintenance laws. We implement a border discontinuity design combined with a triple-difference specification to overcome policy endogeneity concerns, and we find that the enactment of VPROs in Florida more than halved the negative externality from foreclosure. This finding is robust to a ...
Voters hold the key: lock-in, mobility, and the portability of property tax exemptions
Since California voters approved Proposition 13 in 1978, fifteen states have enacted caps on the annual growth in assessed property values. These laws often impose a great burden on municipal finances and create horizontal inequity among homeowners. Why do voters choose to limit local government in this way? Reasons may include controlling the power of special interests, addressing agency failures of government officials (the "Leviathan" hypothesis), or preserving the impact of a current but fleeting antitax political alignment. Yet research has found that voters' perception of a limitation's ...
Do homeowners associations mitigate or aggravate negative spillovers from neighboring homeowner distress?
Experiences reveal that the monitoring costs of the foreclosure crisis may be nontrivial, and smaller governments may have more success at addressing potential negative externalities. One highly localized form of government is a homeowners association (HOA). HOAs could be well-suited for triaging foreclosures, as they may detect delinquencies and looming defaults through direct observation or missed dues. On the other hand, the reliance on dues may leave HOAs particularly vulnerable to members? foreclosure. We examine how property prices respond to homeowner distress and foreclosure within ...
Estimating the holdout problem in land assembly
The Supreme Court?s recent decision in Kelo v. New London allows the use of eminent domain to facilitate private economic development. While the court?s condition for allowing takings was highly expansive, there may be a market failure that warrants state intervention when parcels of land need to be combined for redevelopment. The collective action or strategic holdout problem associated with land assembly may limit redevelopment of older communities when one or more existing owners seek to capture a disproportionate share of the potential surplus. The problem may be compounded by landowners? ...
COVID-19 Mortgage Relief—The Role of Income Support
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a large number of furloughs, layoffs, reductions in hours worked, and wage cuts. Anticipating that many homeowners would consequently have problems paying their monthly mortgage bill, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development ordered all mortgage servicers of federally backed debt to provide forbearance to any homeowners affected by the crisis. In addition, bank regulators encouraged lenders to forbear and restructure mortgages for borrowers affected by the shutdown, actions that staved off an immediate wave of foreclosures. At the end of the ...
Work zone ahead? Repairing the Southeast's infrastructure
The Southeast's infrastructure, which sustains the region's fast-growing population and dynamic economy, faces the challenge of meeting today's needs as well as those accompanying future growth.
Clearing the roadways: the case for congestion pricing
Household Debt and Local Public Finances
In the wake of the Great Recession, steep declines in state and local government expenditures and employment were a large and persistent source of economic weakness. The business cycle was also characterized by large increases and decreases in household debt. We estimate the extent to which variation in local government revenues and expenditures can be explained by variation in the expansion of household debt from 2002 to 2007, and the contraction thereafter. We merge individual credit balance data with municipal financial data from the Census of Governments. Using Census block indicators, we ...