Header Image for Print

The goal of Cityscape is to bring high-quality original research on housing and community development issues to scholars, government officials, and practitioners. Cityscape is open to all relevant disciplines, including architecture, consumer research, demography, economics, engineering, ethnography, finance, geography, law, planning, political science, public policy, regional science, sociology, statistics, and urban studies.

Cityscape is published three times a year by the Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

  • Rental Housing Policy in the United States
  • Volume 13 Number 2
  • Managing Editor: Mark D. Shroder
  • Associate Editor: Michelle P. Matuga

Thoughts on Rental Housing and Rental Housing Assistance

Richard K. Green, University of Southern California

As with the articles in this issue, this introduction reflects the views of the authors and does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.


The United States has long exhibited enthusiasm for homeownership. The converse of this is that it has tended to neglect rental housing. This article seeks to do the following: (1) explain why rental housing is desirable; (2) lay out the policies that favor owneroccupied housing; (3) discuss current subsidy programs for rental housing, with particular emphasis on programs that are not simply legacies of past policy; and (4) examine how these programs might be improved or reformed. It argues that in a second-best world of restrictive zoning and preferences for ownership, rental subsidies may be justified on both equity and efficiency grounds.

Previous Article   |   Next Article