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Assessing the Economic Benefits of Public Housing

Assessing the Economic Benefits of Public Housing quantifies the contribution public housing provides to local economies and describes its role in supporting local industries and low wage workers. The report finds that improvement projects to public housing buildings and the development of new public housing units injects $2.12 back into the local community for every $1 spent. The study was conducted by Econsult Corporation and guided by the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC), in collaboration with public housing authority industry groups.

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Health Starts at Home: PHA Health Partnerships

Health Starts at Home explores the health initiatives offered by housing organizations providing federal rental assistance. It finds that half of these organizations are engaged in some type of resident health initiative, most with a health organization partner. The report, based on a survey conducted by the Council of Large Public Housing Agencies (CLPHA) and PAHRC also describes the types of services offered, partnership types, and the barriers to offering health services for organizations offering and not offering services.

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How Housing is Advancing Educational Outcomes

How Housing is Advancing Educational Outcomes finds that over half of housing agencies providing federal rental assistance are engaged in providing educational services to their residents either directly or with a partner. The report, based on a survey conducted by the Council of Large Public Housing Agencies (CLPHA) and PAHRC explores the services offered and the challenges that keep many agencies from providing such services.

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Opting In, Opting Out: A Decade Later

Opting In, Opting Out: A Decade Later updates the 2006 report Multifamily Properties: Opting In, Opting Out and Remaining Affordable for the period 2005 to 2014. It finds that more owners made active decisions to opt in to Section 8 assistance in the latter period, while HUD’s older subsidized mortgage programs were largely being phased out. Factors such as for-profit ownership and low rent-to-FMR ratios continued to be associated with higher risk of loss of affordability, but these factors were less influential from 2005 to 2014 than in the original study. The article also explores the use of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program and HUD refinancing to preserve affordability in Section 8 developments. It finds that these preservation tools are associated with extended affordability for thousands of HUD-assisted properties. However, additional preservation initiatives and improved targeting may be needed to preserve other HUD-assisted properties, particularly smaller developments in strong real estate markets. The research was conducted by the University of Florida, Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology, and the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation and published in Cityscape.

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The Cost of Cuts

The Cost of Cuts: The Impact of Reductions in Capital Investments to Public Housing Authorities estimates the net cost of a 20% cut in the annual capital grants that fund the maintenance and improvement of the public housing infrastructure. The study, completed by the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation (PAHRC) and the Econsult Corporation, finds that a 20% long-term cut in the annual funds intended for capital projects erases every $1 saved and incurs an extra $0.30 in costs for each $1 cut. At minimum, such a cut would erase $0.75 for every $1 saved. If the reductions were only to last one year, negative impacts would entirely erase a $1 cut, using moderate estimates, and $0.46 of a $1 cut at a bare minimum. PHA Executive Directors surveyed for the report reported that the biggest casualty of funding cuts will be the modernization of existing units; a 20% temporary reduction in capital funding will result in a 55% drop in budget to update older units. This reduction, as well as a slow-down in the construction of new units, will result in the eventual loss of 231,000 units available for families living in public housing if made permanent; a consequence both of the loss of newly constructed units, and many units lost to depreciation.

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