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Housing, Debt and the Economy: a Tale of Two Countries

John Muellbauer ()

No 855, Economics Series Working Papers from University of Oxford, Department of Economics

Abstract: In housing affordability levels and volatility, there could hardly be a greater contrast than between the UK and Germany. Differences in history, institutions and policies are explored in this paper. Residential housing supply has been far more expansionary in Germany and mortgage credit more tightly regulated. A sensibly regulated rental market and stable German house prices have combined to leave the rental sector with over half of tenures. Policy failures in the UK have resulted in widening intergenerational inequality, increased social exclusion, adversely affected productivity and growth and raised the risk of financial instability. Policy lessons are drawn for the UK, which go far beyond the remit of the immediately responsible Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

Keywords: Housing markets in the UK and Germany; housing affordability; property taxation; land value tax; land-use regulations; rent regulation; mortgage markets; house price volatility; residential mobility (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: R31 R21 H20 H24 G21 R38 R23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur and nep-ure
Date: 2018-07-24
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