The value of a healthy home: Lead paint remediation and housing values

Published in Journal of Public Economics, 2017

Recommended citation: Billings, Stephen B., and Kevin T. Schnepel (2017). "The value of a healthy home: Lead paint remediation and housing values." Journal of Public Economics. 153.

Abstract: The presence of lead paint significantly impairs cognitive and behavioral development, yet little is known about the value to households of avoiding this residence-specific environmental health risk. In this paper, we estimate the benefits of lead-paint remediation on housing prices. Using data on all homes that applied to a HUD-funded program in Charlotte, North Carolina, we adopt a difference-in-differences estimator that compares values among remediated properties with those for which an inspection does not identify a lead paint hazard. Results indicate large returns for public and private investment in remediation with each $1 spent on lead remediation generating $2.60 in benefits as well as a reduction in residential turnover.

Link to paper on journal’s website. E-mail me for a copy if you do not have free access.