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This paper was originally presented at the conference on "Rent Control: The International Experience" at John Deutsch Institute of Economic Policy, Queen's University, Kingston, Canada, September 1-4, 1987. It presents an analysis of Los Angeles' rent controls and provides a quantitative forecast of the housing market effects of an actual rent control ordinance. The authors indicate that two of their findings should apply to other communities with rent control: First, the bulk of the transfers from landlords to tenants achieved by a rent control law are realized early in the law's life, but the bulk of the economic cost of the law--the housing stock lost through inefficient workings of the market mechanism under rent control--is incurred later in the law's life. Second, legal provisions that ameliorate rent control's deleterious effect on landlords' incentives to maintain their dwellings reduce the benefits of rent control to tenants.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

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