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Abstract: Using a novel dataset which merges real estate listings with real estate transactions in San Francisco from 2007-2009, we present new evidence that foreclosures causally depress nearby home prices. We show that this decrease occurs only after the foreclosed home is listed for sale, which suggests that the effect is due to the additional housing supply created by foreclosure rather than from neglect of the foreclosed property. Consistent with a framework where a foreclosed home simply increases supply, we find that new listings of foreclosed homes and non-foreclosed homes each lower sales prices of homes within 0.1 miles of the listing by 1 percent.

Keywords: Foreclosures, externalities

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