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Use of Landlord Incentives in the Housing Choice Voucher Program

We conducted this limited review to determine the use of landlord incentives to increase landlord participation and retention and expand housing options for program participants outside areas of low-income or minority concentration.

The majority (28 of 34) of responsive MTW PHAs used the program and funding flexibilities of the MTW program to offer landlord incentives.  These PHAs offered many types of landlord incentives as a tool to increase landlord participation and retention and expand housing options outside areas of low-income or minority concentration.  PHAs offered nonmonetary or monetary incentives or a combination of both.  Because each PHA operates in a unique rental housing market, there was no consensus on the best or most effective type of incentives.  However, PHAs generally stated that the incentives they offered were at least somewhat effective.  PHAs that did not use any form of incentive stated that their voucher holders had no difficulty in finding a suitable unit or that they were considering an incentive in the future.

These insights from PHAs can help HUD better serve and connect with its crucial partners, the landlords.  At the same time, it should be acknowledged that the effectiveness of an incentive varies widely, depending the environment in which the PHA operates.  HUD should consider

  • conducting further studies to determine the effectiveness of incentives,
  • assessing whether expanding implementation of incentives beyond MTW PHAs is appropriate, and
  • using the results of this review to assist with its Landlord Task Force and Housing Choice Voucher Mobility Demonstration.

This report contains no recommendations.