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Report

Rethinking Local Affordable Housing Strategies: Lessons from 70 Years of Policy and Practice

Noah Sawyer, Mary Cunningham, Karen Destorel Brown, Margery Austin Turner, and Bruce Katz

This report aims to help state and local leaders meet the modern realities of the affordable housing challenge by looking back at the lessons of the past 70 years of housing policies.

This project contains the following main components.

Executive Summary and Full Paper

The full report examines the effectiveness of seven decades of affordable housing strategies—in rental housing assistance programs, homeownership policies, and land use/regulatory approaches—in carrying out seven overarching goals to promoting healthy families and communities.

The review is based on a scan of the voluminous body of research in the
housing policy field that is too daunting for most local stakeholders to
sort through. Although this is not intended as the definitive summation of
all housing literature, it does highlight the most salient findings for
today’s busy practitioners and policymakers.

Finally, based on the findings from the literature review, the report extracts implications for today’s state and local affordable housing strategies.

Download Report by Sections:
Executive Summary (PDF)
Chapter 1 – Introduction (PDF)
Chapter 2 – Rental Housing Assistance (PDF)
Chapter 3 – Homeownership Assistance (PDF)
Chapter 4 – Land Use and Regulations (PDF)
Chapter 5 – Pulling It All Together: A Summary of Key Lessons (PDF)
Chapter 6 – Conclusion: Implications for Local Housing Strategies (PDF)
References (PDF)

An Action Brief

This summary paper extracts the most salient implications of the report’s findings for local action.

Affordable Housing Matrix

The matrix provides a quick visual synopsis of how well each of the housing approaches advances each of the seven basic goals of an affordable housing policy.

Project Overview | Matrix Overview

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