Essays on demographic factors and housing markets

Abstract: This thesis consists of four essays on demographic variables and housing markets.Essay I analyses the impact of demographic changes on housing demand. A demographic demand variable is constructed out of the age structure of housing demand and the age composition of the population. The effect of demographic demand is positive on both the price of housing and on the size of the housing stock. As the problem is dynamic by nature a set of error correction models is estimated. Demographic demand has the expected positive effect in the long run on both the prices of houses and on the investment in housing. It is though more difficult to explain the short run price fluctuations by changes in the age structure.Essay II, written jointly with Per-Anders Edin and Christian Nilsson, is concerned with migration between the Swedish counties during the period 1964-93. The determinants of inter-regional migration is investigated, with a particular interest in how regional labor market conditions affect migration. The simple fixed effects estimators indicate strong relationships between regional migration and regional labor market conditions. The baseline estimates must be interpreted with caution though. In an attemptto eliminate problems with dynamic specification and potential endogeneity, various dynamic panel data models are estimated using GMM techniques. In general, it seems difficult to find models that pass standard specification tests and are robust to changes in sample.Essay III focuses on the Simultaneous determination of regional migration and regional house prices with the focus on the price of housing. As migration flows to a large extent are unexpected and consists of people active in the housing market, they should be expected to influence regional house prices. A dynamic fixed effect model of house prices is estimated and the results suggest the that house prices are affected by migration in the expected way.Essay IV analyses household formation and tenure choice among Swedish youth in a probability model. The results suggest that the impact of the economic factors influencing household formation have become more pronounced over the investigated period. A majority of the socio-demographic variables have the expected impact. Further, the results of the economic capacity variables are more uniform when the students are excluded and the sample becomes more homogenous. Tenure choice is affected by the relative cost of homeowning and by various socio-demographic factors.

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