NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Loss Aversion and Seller Behavior: Evidence from the Housing Market

David Genesove, Christopher Mayer

NBER Working Paper No. 8143
Issued in March 2001
NBER Program(s):   AP   IO

Data from downtown Boston in the 1990s show that loss aversion determines seller behavior in the housing market. Condominium owners subject to nominal losses 1) set higher asking prices of 25-35 percent of the difference between the property's expected selling price and their original purchase price; 2) attain higher selling prices of 3-18 percent of that difference; and 3) exhibit a much lower sale hazard than other sellers. The list price results are twice as large for owner-occupants as investors, but hold for both. These findings are consistent with prospect theory and help explain the positive price-volume correlation in real estate markets.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w8143

Published: Genesove, David and Christohper Mayer. "Loss Aversion And Seller Behavior: Evidence From The Housing Market," Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2001, v116(4,Nov), 1233-1260. citation courtesy of

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