Preliminary design for the Housing Assistance Supply Experiment

by Ira S. Lowry

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Describes the principal features of the Housing Assistance Supply Experiment, part of HUD's experimental housing allowance program. Unlike other housing assistance programs, a housing allowance program would grant funds directly to low-income families, who would use their increased resources to buy housing services in the local housing market. Such a program would enable recipient families to increase their housing consumption without depriving themselves of a reasonable standard of living. The "demand" part of the experiment calls for selection of a sample of low-income families in large metropolitan areas for enrollment in a housing allowance program. The "supply" part of the experiment will test the market's response to a large-scale allowance program, with enrollment of a substantial fraction of the metropolitan population. The experiment is designed to reveal the dynamics of market response to low-income housing demand by actually "injecting" the demand increment and monitoring the market thereafter.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Note series. The note was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1979 to 1993 that reported other outputs of sponsored research for general distribution.

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