Hedonic valuation with translating amenities: Mountain Pine Beetles and host trees in the Colorado Front Range
In hedonic valuation studies the policy-relevant environmental quality attribute of interest is often costly to measure, especially under pronounced spatial and temporal variability. However, in many cases this attribute affects home prices and consumer preferences solely through its impact on a readily observable, spatially delineated, and time-invariant feature of the physical landscape. We label such a feature a “translating amenity.” We show that under certain conditions changes in the marginal effect of such amenities on home values over time can be used to drawinference on the implicit price of the unobserved environmentalquality of interest. We illustrate this approach in the context of a repeat-sales model and the recently intensified outbreak of the Mountain Pine Beetle in the Colorado Front Range.