Property Taxes and Elderly Mobility.

TitleProperty Taxes and Elderly Mobility.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsShan, H
JournalJ Urban Econ
Date Published2010 Mar 01
ISSN Number0094-1190

The 2000-05 housing market boom in the U.S. has caused sharp increases in residential property taxes. Housing-rich but income-poor elderly homeowners often complain about rising tax burdens, and anecdotal evidence suggests that some move to reduce their tax burden. There has been little systematic analysis, however, of the link between property tax levels and the mobility rate of elderly homeowners. This paper investigates this link using household-level panel data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) and a newly collected data set on state-provided property tax relief programs. These relief programs generate variation in effective property tax burdens that is not due solely to arguably endogenous local community choices about taxes and expenditure programs. The findings provide evidence suggesting that higher property taxes raise mobility among elderly homeowners. The point estimates from instrumental variable estimation using relief programs to generate instruments suggest that a $100 increase in annual property taxes is associated with a 0.73 percentage point increase in the two-year mobility rate for homeowners over the age of 50. This is an eight percent increase from the baseline two-year mobility rate of nine percent. These results are robust to alternative specifications.


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Endnote Keywords

Household effects on labor supply/Taxation/Economics of the Elderly/Economics of the Handicapped/Non-labor Market Discrimination/Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics: Regional/Migration, Regional Labor Markets, Population, Neighborhood/Characteristics/Property Tax/Taxes

Endnote ID


Alternate JournalJ Urban Econ
Citation Key7470
PubMed ID20161617
PubMed Central IDPMC2811882
Grant ListP01 AG005842 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
P01 AG005842-20 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States