Negative Home Equity and Household Mobility: Evidence from Administrative Data
We investigate the impact of negative home equity on household mobility. We employ a unique administrative data set, which contains annual mobility and a large set of homeownercharacteristics of more than two million Dutch households. We exploit the regional variation of the substantial and unanticipated housing market bust starting in 2008 until 2012 to identify the effect of negative home equity on mobility. We find that households falling into negative equity due to unanticipated declining house prices are 18 percent less likely to move compared to households maintaining positive home equity.