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Property Tax Compliance and Reverse Mortgages: Using Nudges to Improve the Market

Published Date March 01, 2022
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Abstract

This study is based on a field experiment designed to increase the salience of property tax and insurance payments among a particularly vulnerable population, older adults who took out a reverse mortgage. Homeowners who were randomly assigned to receive mailed letters reminding them about payment obligations missed subsequent payments at one-third lower rates relative to homeowners who were not assigned reminder letters. Those assigned to the reminder letter treatment were also significantly less likely to carry large default balances at the end of the study period, reducing their risk of foreclosure.

Property Tax Compliance and Reverse Mortgages: Using Nudges to Improve the Market, with Michael Collins, Donald Haurin, Caezilia Loibl, and Julia Brown.* National Tax Journal. 75(1): 33-59, 2022.