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The incidence of UK housing benefit: Evidence from the 1990s reforms

  • Gibbons, Stephen
  • Manning, Alan

Housing Benefit (HB) in the UK subsidizes the rent of tenants in both the private and public sectors. Its share in total welfare benefits has risen markedly through time and there is widespread dissatisfaction with it. But, reform has been very slow. One important issue is the extent to which the incidence of HB is actually on the tenants. Exploiting two data sets from the mid-1990s when the subsidy regime changed for some tenants but not for others, this paper explores the incidence. We find that some of the incidence is on landlords though our two data sets differ in the extent to which this is true. We also find evidence in support of a ¿matching¿ model of the rental market rather tha n a perfectly competitive one.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V76-4GHRBX5-1/2/e328946790c7814dd2ea1b502439bc7c
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 90 (2006)
Issue (Month): 4-5 (May)
Pages: 799-822

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:90:y:2006:i:4-5:p:799-822
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

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  1. Todd Sinai & Joel Waldfogel, 2002. "Do Low-Income Housing Subsidies Increase Housing Consumption?," NBER Working Papers 8709, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Gabrielle Fack, 2005. "Pourquoi les ménages pauvres paient-ils des loyers de plus en plus élevés ?," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 381(1), pages 17-40.
  3. Edgar O. Olsen, 2003. "Housing Programs for Low-Income Households," NBER Chapters, in: Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, pages 365-442 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Gibbons, Stephen & Manning, Alan, 2006. "The incidence of UK housing benefit: Evidence from the 1990s reforms," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(4-5), pages 799-822, May.
  5. Wheaton, William C, 1990. "Vacancy, Search, and Prices in a Housing Market Matching Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1270-92, December.
  6. Susin, Scott, 2002. "Rent vouchers and the price of low-income housing," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 109-152, January.
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