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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.

  • The Family Options Study
  • Volume 19, Number 3
  • Managing Editor: Mark D. Shroder
  • Associate Editor: Michelle P. Matuga

U.S. Commentary: Effects of Housing Subsidies on the Well-Being of Children and Their Families in the Family Options Study

Aletha C. Huston
University of Texas at Austin

Homelessness and housing instability are bad for children and families—a fact that is obvious to any reasonable individual but is also well documented by social science research. Children who are homeless or who move often have poorer school achievement and more behavioral problems than comparably poor children who live in more stable housing situations (Buckner, 2008; Mehana and Reynolds, 2004). Public policy solutions for these problems are less obvious, but the Family Options Study provides some clear guidance about what does and does not work. In the Family Options Study (Gubits et al., 2016), the effects of four types of policy interventions on homeless families with children were compared in a random assignment design. Families were followed for 3 years after the interventions were introduced.

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