A new study at Downsizing Government looks at low-income housing aid. Howard Husock of the Manhattan Institute examines the history of federal aid and discusses problems with current policies, particularly rental subsidies and public housing.
One problem is that housing aid is costly to taxpayers. The federal government spent $30 billion on rental subsidies (Section 8 vouchers) and almost $6 billion on public housing in 2016.
Another problem is that housing aid and related rules are costly to urban communities. Howard argues that federal interventions undermine neighborhoods, encourage dependency, and create disincentives for long-term maintenance and improvements in housing.