Residential mobility of housing allowance recipients

by Mark D. Menchik

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Analyzes the residential mobility of allowance recipients during the first two years of the Housing Assistance Supply Experiment, and develops a new length-of-stay statistical technique for short or otherwise censored mobility information. Of the 9,100 households that received allowances during the period, only 1,900 moved. The strongest determinants of mobility were found to be (1) whether a client's dwelling at enrollment is ever certified as acceptable (the estimated probability of a recipient moving in the first year after enrolling is .22, but for recipients who first receive payments while living in the same dwelling they occupy at enrollment, the moveout probability is only .10); (2) tenure (renters are far more mobile than homeowners); and (3) stage in the family life cycle (elderly households are the least mobile, young families, the most). The length-of-stay equations agree closely with the data, standard errors averaging 9.8 percent of estimated length of stay; replication proved successful.

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