Housing Policy in the United States  book cover
3rd Edition

Housing Policy in the United States

ISBN 9780415836500
Published July 1, 2014 by Routledge
484 Pages

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Book Description

The classic primer for its subject, Housing Policy in the United States, has been substantially revised in the wake of the 2007 near-collapse of the housing market and the nation’s recent signs of recovery. Like its previous editions, this standard volume offers a broad overview of the field, but expands to include new information on how the crisis has affected the nation’s housing challenges, and the extent to which the federal government has addressed them. Schwartz also includes the politics of austerity that has permeated almost all aspects of federal policymaking since the Congressional elections of 2010, new initiatives to rehabilitate public housing, and a new chapter on the foreclosure crisis. The latest available data on housing conditions, housing discrimination, housing finance, and programmatic expenditures is included, along with all new developments in federal housing policy. This book is the perfect foundational text for urban studies, urban planning, social policy, and housing policy courses.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. Trends, Patterns, Problems 3. Housing Finance 4. Taxes and Housing 5. The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit 6. Public Housing 7. Privately Owned Rental Housing Built with Federal Subsidy 8. Vouchers 9. State and Local Housing Policy and the Nonprofit Sector 10. Housing for People with Special Needs 11. Fair Housing and Community Reinvestment 12. Homeownership and Income Integration 13. The Foreclosure Crisis and Policy Response 14. Conclusions

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Alex F. Schwartz is Professor of Urban Policy at the New School.


"The best just got significantly better: the Third Edition of Housing Policy in The United States. The new chapter on the aftermath of the housing crash is especially timely and, like the rest of the book, brimming with up-to-date information that is synthesized with students and practitioners in mind."

  • George Galster, Urban Studies & Planning, Wayne State University

"Few books reward the purchase of a "new edition" as much as this one does. Alex Schwartz’s text remains the definitive guide to the evolution of American housing policy not just because he can deftly clarify arcane material but because he grounds this explanation in a thoroughly up-to-date engagement with the latest research and economic contexts. This book does much more than narrate housing policy; it humanely elucidates what works, what doesn’t, and why it matters."

  • Lawrence J. Vale, Urban Design and Planning, MIT

"Housing Policy in the United States is indispensable to anyone who teaches in this field. The book is in a class by itself as an up-to-date source on the wide range of housing policy approaches in the U.S. The chapters are well-written and concise yet comprehensive and full of important information about all of the major dimensions of U.S. housing policy. While I cannot imagine teaching a housing course without it, it will also be useful in broader courses on social policy. The new edition offers a chapter on the foreclosure crisis and updates developments in all other areas of housing policy. Nothing else out there comes close."

  • Edward G. Goetz, Urban and Regional Planning, University of Minnesota

"I keep Alex Schwartz’s book on my desk, within arm’s reach. I refer policymakers and practitioners, as well as students, to it regularly. I don’t go a week without seeing it referenced in some discussion of housing policy or planning. It is valuable not just for discussions of U.S. policy but also for thinking about international comparisons. And with the third edition, Schwartz manages to keep the information up to date and add material on issues that have emerged in recent years. Amazing."

  • Daniel W. Immergluck, City and Regional Planning, Georgia Tech

"This is a definitive text for understanding the history and functioning of housing policy in the US. Comprehensive and up-to-date, it is a most valuable resource for practitioners, policy makers and all who wish to be informed about US housing policy."

  • Susan Wachter, Real Estate and Finance, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

"For nearly a decade, Alex Schwartz’s Housing Policy in the United States has been the ‘go-to’ text for housing and community development students and practitioners. No other single source comes even close to providing such clear descriptions and analyses of housing programs and policies, while also presenting thoughtful explanations about unresolved issues and debates. With this third edition, we now have the most up-to-date information available on key topics such as the mortgage crisis, the Low Income Housing Tax Credit, and Housing Choice Vouchers. A major achievement and an outstanding book!"

  • Rachel G. Bratt, Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning, Tufts University

"This is THE book to use for courses on housing policy and programs. The book conveys the strengths and weaknesses of America’s crazy-quilt system of housing development, regulation, finance and policy.  The third edition captures the exciting and troubling issues surrounding the Wall Street mortgage meltdown, the epidemic of foreclosures, and the efforts of federal, state and local governments to address these problems. Kudos again to Alex Schwartz for making a complex topic understandable, even enjoyable, without over-simplifying."

  • Peter Dreier, Chair, Urban & Environmental Policy Department, Occidental College

"This edition of Housing Policy in the United States provides vital guidance for how we can ameliorate the nation’s most critical housing problems. More importantly this book shows us how we can effectively respond to some of the nation’s related but even more critical challenges posed by ongoing financial crises and persisting racial inequality."

  • Gregory D. Squires, Sociology, Public Policy, and Public Administration, George Washington University

"An excellent textbook just got even better. This third edition of the premier text on U.S. housing policy is comprehensive, well organized, engaging and current. It contains excellent new sections on housing trends, the impacts of the mortgage crisis, and the impacts of fiscal austerity on housing programs and the people they serve. It’s an ideal text for both undergraduate and graduate courses on housing policy."

  • William M. Rohe, City and Regional Planning, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

"Housing Policy in the United States has proven to be the go-to book for students, researchers, practitioners or anyone interested in housing.  Its coverage is comprehensive, and its language is accessible.  The third edition updates this already impressive book with new information on the mortgage market meltdown and the price bubble that led the nation into recession."

  • Kirk McClure, Architecture, Design, and Planning, University of Kansas

"I use this book in my courses and love it.  It covers the full range of housing issues, from the social to the financial.  It features housing’s role in the U.S. economy and as a vehicle for social mobility, exploitation, and discrimination. I recommend it as a reference for student and scholar alike."

  • Anne B. Shlay, Sociology, Temple University

"Alex Schwartz is one of the best known US academics working in the field of housing and housing policy. He has a depth of knowledge which helps bring the issues to life. This text will be particularly useful for an international audience who often find it difficult to get a full picture of how the housing system in the States actually operates."

  • Christine Whitehead, Housing, London School of Economics

"Housing Policy in the United States, 3rd edition, continues to be the go-to text for teaching about housing policy in the USA. The book is appropriate for upper level undergraduate and graduate students, or anyone looking for a good reference."

  • Rachel Garshick Kleit, The Ohio State University

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