Housing assistance and housing insecurity: A study of renters in southeastern Michigan in the wake of the great recession

This article examines the factors shaping longitudinal patterns of housing insecurity in the wake of the Great Recession, with a focus on whether housing assistance helped renters who received it. We use data from the first two waves (2009-10 and 2011) of the Michigan Recession and Recovery Study, a population-representative sample of working-age adults from Southeast Michigan. We use detailed reports from renters and other nonhomeowners to construct measures of instability and cost-related housing problems at both waves, and we compare the changes in these over follow up between housing assistance recipients and their income-eligible but nonrecipient counterparts. Our findings suggest that receiving housing assistance reduced the chance of experiencing housing insecurity problems over follow up regardless of baseline housing insecurity.