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Jeff Cohen, Ph.D. - University of Connecticut. Storrs, CT, US

Jeff Cohen, Ph.D.

Professor of Real Estate and Finance | University of Connecticut


Jeffrey Cohen is an expert on how airport noise, transit and highway infrastructure improvements impact real estate.


Jeffrey P. Cohen is an associate professor of Real Estate and Finance at UConn’s Center for Real Estate, and Dean’s Ackerman Scholar, at the School of Business. Professor Cohen has longstanding collaborative research relationships with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, and has been a recent Visiting Scholar at the St. Louis Fed in May, 2017 , December, 2017, March 2018, and June 2019. His current research interests include the impact of airports and airport noise on commercial and residential property values; property taxation; land value estimation; housing price spillovers across jurisdictions; the impacts of storms on real estate values; and the geographical aspects of REITs. Among approximately 40 peer-reviewed journal publications, he has published his research in several top journals, including: Review of Economics and Statistics, Journal of Urban Economics, Journal of Regional Science, Regional Science and Urban Economics, Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Real Estate Economics, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Review, and others.

He has previous teaching experience at Tufts University, the University of Maryland at College Park, and the University of Hartford. Professor Cohen has also worked full-time at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as part of an award from the National Academies; and has been a Fellow with, and a seminar organizer for the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. He also has previous full-time employment experience in the private sector as a Senior Economist at Standard and Poor’s. He has served on expert panels for the National Academies, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. His other grants and consulting clients have included the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Small Business Administration, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the Vancouver Airport Authority in Canada, the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the National Metropolitan Transportation Center (METRANS) at California State University-Long Beach.

Professor Cohen is currently the Principal Investigator on Phase 1 of a grant from the State of Connecticut Department of Transportation and the U.S. Department of Transportation/Federal Highway Administration, on how the new commuter rail line (called CTrail) connecting New Haven, Hartford, and Springfield MA, impacts real estate in neighborhoods near the stations.

Areas of Expertise (4)

Residential Real Estate

Applied Spatial Econometrics

Real Estate Economics and Finance

Transportation and Real Estate

Education (3)

University of Maryland at College Park: Ph.D., Economics 1998

University of Toronto: M.A., Economics 1993

Tufts University: B.S., Quantitative Economics 1992






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Media Appearances (12)

Homeownership trends: New data shows areas of concerns in CT

NBC Connecticut  tv


For starters, overall home ownership in Connecticut went down in the decade between the 2010 and the 2020 census -anywhere from down roughly 1% in Windham County, to homeownership dropping almost 5% in Fairfield County. We asked Jeffrey Cohen, UConn Business School professor of real estate, for his take. “2020 was a period that was the beginning of the pandemic and there was lots of supply chain issues that disrupted new construction. And all of this can lead to a housing shortage that keeps prices high and makes it difficult for people to purchase houses," Cohen said.

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Looking for a house in CT? Here’s why so few are for sale and there’s no big building boom

Hartford Courant  print


Last week, mortgage giant Freddie Mac reported that nationally the average rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate home loan was 6.9%, up from last week when it averaged 6.81%. A year ago, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.99%. “And that’s putting home buying out of reach for a lot of people,” Jeffrey P. Cohen, a professor of finance and real estate at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, said. “And a lot of people are turning to apartments for longer than they had hoped for or longer than they expected.”

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Why a criminology prof wants addiction clinics within 500m of major transit hubs

CBC Radio  radio


Jeffrey Cohen, a professor at the University of Connecticut's School of Business, has been researching the benefits of bringing addiction and mental health treatment facilities near public transit routes. His research project ran between 2013 and 2018 is currently a working paper under peer review. His team looked at a rapid bus transit line connecting four towns in Connecticut, including the state capital of Hartford. "What we're finding is that there's this significant relationship between being close to these new transit start ups … and costs, operating costs are significantly less," said Cohen.

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Looking to buy a house in Greater Hartford? Choices are few; these are the 10 towns and cities that have the most for sale.

Hartford Courant  print


Jeffrey P. Cohen, a professor of finance and real estate at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, said new data from the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston shows that today’s home sale prices, when adjusted for inflation — the general overall rise in prices — are generally not higher than they were in 1991. Cohen also noted that price increases are evidence of Connecticut catching up in price recovery. That’s something that most parts of the country experienced sooner after the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009 but eluded Connecticut until the pandemic struck, Cohen said.

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The heat is on: 7 things to know about Greater Hartford’s summer home sale market

Hartford Courant  print


Jeffrey P. Cohen, interim director of the Center for Real Estate and Urban Economic Studies at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, said he sees the combination of relative housing affordability in Connecticut and and an overall housing shortage across many regions of the country as an upside to home sales in Connecticut. “And so, I don’t see a big crash in housing prices in Connecticut in the near future,” Cohen, a professor of finance and economics at UConn, said, “You might see a slight correction or slight adjustment. But in at least the next six to 12 months, I see the housing market remaining fairly strong in Connecticut.”

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How proximity to CT highways affects home values and divides communities

Hearst Connecticut Media  print


The proximity to highways affects home value in Connecticut, and those benefits are largely drawn along racial lines, according to a study from researchers at the University of Connecticut. The United States interstate system was built between 1940 and 1960, cutting right through and destroying some existing communities and creating value for others, according to Jeffrey Cohen, Kinnard scholar in real estate and a professor of finance at the University of Connecticut School of Business.

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Analyst: CT real estate market could reach ‘unsustainable’ level. How is it affecting renters and buyers?

Hearst Connecticut Media  print


A series of factors is pushing the Connecticut real estate market so high that it’s excluding many renters and buyers, according to one analyst. “If you don't take control of that by possibly raising interest rates, then you're going to see this possibly unsustainable rise,” said Jeffrey Cohen, the Kinnard Scholar in real estate and a professor of finance at the University of Connecticut School of Business.

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2 Scrappy Airline Startups Are Sparking a Unlikely War Between New Haven and Hartford Airports

Airline Weekly  online


Jeffrey Cohen, a finance professor at the University of Connecticut, said that historically competition between the two Connecticut airports has been limited because Tweed has had few flights. “I think Avelo will draw some passengers (to Tweed) who had been going to Bradley,” he said. “It gives more options in terms of timing and in the choice of airlines. Cohen noted that he recently flew Avelo from New Haven to Fort Lauderdale. Tweed is “an interesting airport,” he said. A drive from Hartford uses two interstate highways, but then “You drive through a residential neighborhood, very well kept up with nice, well-manicured yards, and then all of a sudden there’s the airport."

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What’s next for the real estate market?

Connecticut Magazine  print


But for the first few months of 2022, there probably won’t be much of a change in prices, says Jeffrey Cohen, a professor of finance at the University of Connecticut’s Center for Real Estate and Urban Economic Studies. “You might see some fluctuations, but I don’t see any dramatic increases or any dramatic decreases at least through the first half of this year,” Cohen says.

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Q&A: Connecticut Sees Big Demand For Apartment Rentals

NBC Connecticut  tv


The real estate market in Connecticut has had big demand with homes selling at higher than list prices. But this housing boom is causing another kind of boom - a boom in the rental market. NBC Connecticut's Dan Corcoran spoke with Jeffery Cohen, a Kinnard Scholar in real estate and professor of finance at the UConn School of Business, about the market.

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How disasters — manmade or natural — affect the real estate market

Boston Globe  online


Because the Federal Emergency Management Agency flood maps are available to the public, many buyers understand the risk they’re taking when they buy in a documented flood plain, said Jeffrey Cohen, a University of Connecticut professor of finance and real estate. However, as the climate warms and storms grow stronger and wetter, locations once considered safe are also getting hit — and when our expectations of risk change, home values can react in kind. Cohen is seeing that play out in his current research on New York City home prices before and after Superstorm Sandy ravaged the city in 2012.

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Home Warranties Offer Buyers Protection. Just Don’t Forget the Inspection

Wall Street Journal  print


However, in hot markets with low inventory, offering a home warranty may be a warning sign to potential buyers, says Jeffrey P. Cohen, a professor of finance and real estate at the University of Connecticut School of Business. "If you’re in a market like New York City I would see it as a red flag that something may come up." Even if a home warranty is included in the sale, buyers shouldn’t forgo a home inspection, Prof. Cohen says. Skipping an inspection might make your offer more competitive in a bidding war, "but you might be ignoring issues that may come up years from now. You may be hurting yourself down the road," he says.

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Articles (5)

Traffic Noise in Georgia: Sound Levels and Inequality

Journal of Housing Economics

2019 Using Lorenz-type curves, means tests, ordinary least squares, and locally weighted regressions (LWR), we examine the relative burdens of whites, blacks, and Hispanics in Georgia from road and air traffic noise. We find that whites bear less noise than either blacks or Hispanics and that blacks tend to experience more traffic noise than Hispanics. While every Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) showed that blacks experienced relatively more noise than average, such a result did not hold for Hispanics in roughly half of the MSAs.

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Time-Geographically Weighted Regressions and Residential Property Value Assessment

FRB St. Louis Working Paper No. 2019-5

2019 In this study, we develop and apply a new methodology for obtaining accurate and equitable property value assessments. This methodology adds a time dimension to the Geographically Weighted Regressions (GWR) framework, which we call Time-Geographically Weighted Regressions (TGWR). That is, when generating assessed values, we consider sales that are close in time and space to the designated unit.

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Spatial effects and house price dynamics in the USA

Journal of Housing Economics

2016 While an understanding of spatial spillovers and feedbacks in housing markets could provide valuable information for location decisions, little known research has examined this issue for the US Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs). Also, it is unknown whether there can be differences in the spatial effects before and after a major housing “bust”. In this paper we examine spatial effects in house price dynamics.

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The floor area ratio gradient: New York City, 1890–2009

Regional Science and Urban Economics

2014 An important measure of the capital–land ratio in urban areas is the Floor Area Ratio (FAR), which gives a building's total floor area divided by the plot size. Variations in the FAR across cities remain an understudied measure of urban spatial structure. We examine how the FAR varies across the five boroughs of New York City. In particular, we focus on the FAR gradient over the 20th century.

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The broader effects of transportation infrastructure: Spatial econometrics and productivity approaches

Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review

2010 The importance of “broader” economic effects of transportation infrastructure has recently become apparent. “Broader” refers to impacts beyond the geographic boundaries within which the infrastructure investments are undertaken. Approaches to estimate “broader” impacts in production and cost function models are evaluated. A contribution of this paper is the empirical demonstration with a cross-section of US states’ manufacturing data that ignoring broader effects of a spatially lagged dependent variable can lead to mis-statements of the overall productive impacts of public infrastructure.

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