Paul J. Everson Real Estate Center

Presentation Abstract - Michael Seiler

Dr. Michael Seiler2017 Real Estate Conference

Morning Academic Session Presentation:

Dr. Michael Seiler

Keynote Presentation: Improving Mortgage Default Collection Efforts by Employing the Decoy Effect


We test the ability of the Decoy Effect to enhance debt collection efforts and find that by disclosing the Annual Percentage Rate (APR) in settlement offers, participants are less influenced by the decoy and more apt to select the repayment option that is in their best interest. At the same time, by reporting the APR, borrowers are more willing to make repayments on the modified loan, resulting in a net gain to debt collection efforts. Because disclosing the APR is Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) compliant, this simple disclosure has the ability to increase debt collection returns while helping borrowers make better decisions when selecting debt modification repayment plans. Our results suggest an applicability to all types of defaulted debt including mortgages, sub-prime auto loans, credit cards, student loans and payday loans.  

Paper Presentation and Question and Answer Session: Frontier Research Topics in Real Estate Finance