Estimates of Eligibility and Allowance Entitlement Under Alternative Housing Allowance Programs

by Barbara M. Woodfill, Tiina Repnau


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Presents estimates of eligibility rates and allowance costs of various housing assistance programs for the nation and for the six sites considered for the Housing Assistance Supply Experiment. Estimates were prepared with three alternative allowance formulas — each associated with varying policy parameters — and by defining and calculating disposable income. The study concludes that allowance programs should not be chosen simply on the basis of total cost or number of eligible households; choice should reflect the program's purpose, which is to increase low-income families' consumption of housing services. Similarly, alternatives should not be judged in terms of income cutoffs or allocation of benefits by household size, since both income and household size are pertinent factors for low-income households — a fact reflected in the allowance formulas considered here.

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.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.