Abstract and Keywords
Housing finance in the United States has changed considerably since the late nineteenth century. Institutional lenders gradually displaced individual investors, experiments with securitization flourished and then receded, mortgage contracts evolved, and the Great Depression of the 1930s led to nationwide declines in real estate prices, a major housing finance crisis, and the advent of federal government involvement in the residential mortgage market with a slate of new programs. Over the same long period, home ownership has risen, though most of the increase was concentrated in the period from 1940 to 1960, and the quality of the housing stock has improved.
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