Housing Markets in a Pandemic: Evidence from Historical Outbreaks

M K Francke, Matthijs Korevaar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


How do pandemics affect urban housing markets? This paper studies historical outbreaks of the plague in 17th-century Amsterdam and cholera in 19th-century Paris to answer this question. Based on micro-level transaction data, we show outbreaks resulted in large declines in house prices, and smaller declines in rent prices. We find particularly large reductions in house prices during the first six months of an epidemic, and in heavily-affected areas. However, these price shocks were only transitory, and both cities quickly reverted to their initial price paths. Our findings suggest these two cities were very resilient to major shocks originating from epidemics.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Urban Economics
Publication statusPublished - May 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Korevaar has been financed by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research under the Research Talent scheme (no. 406.16.552).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Author(s)


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