Racial and ethnic price differentials in the housing market
© 2017 Do minorities pay more than whites for similar housing? We revisit this important question using a rich new dataset that covers two million repeat-sales housing transactions drawn from four major metropolitan areas. Our analysis applies a repeat-sales framework, including house and neighborhood-by-time fixed effects to control for unobserved differences in the quality of homes and their associated neighborhoods. In contrast to most of the recent literature, we find that black and Hispanic homebuyers pay premia of around 2% on average across the four cities – differences not explained by variation in buyer income or access to credit. We also show black and Hispanic buyers pay more for housing regardless of the race or ethnicity of the seller, suggesting that the estimated premia are unlikely to be driven by a very direct form of racial prejudice. Our estimates have implications for the levels and persistence of racial differences in home ownership, the segregation of neighborhoods, and the dynamics of wealth accumulation.
Bayer, P; Casey, M; Ferreira, F; McMillan, R
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