Investigating the association between the Low Income Housing Tax Credit and health in a nationally representative sample

Associate Name: Craig Pollack

Funding Source/Period of the Grant: HPC Pilot 1/1/2018-8/31/2018


   In recent years, there have been increasing conversations between housing and health sectors in an attempt to collaborate on policies that addresses the intersection of these areas. While the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) is the federal government’s main strategy for addressing the shortage of affordable housing, creating over 2.8 million affordable housing units since its inception in 1986, little attention has been given to the potential health impact of the LIHTC.
   A unique data linkage is currently being constructed that will enable researchers—for the first time—to study the impact of living in a LIHTC unit on health. Specifically, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is in the process of merging data on housing units with the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), a large, nationally representative sample. Using the new data linkage, we will investigate the following research questions:
1) Do adults and children who live in a LIHTC-created housing unit report better overall health (e.g., selfreported
health, depression) compared to similar individuals who do not live in LIHTC-created units?
2) Are there differences in health care utilization including access to primary and preventive care for adults
and children living in LIHTC-created housing units compared to those who do not?
3) Are the associations from the first two research questions mediated or moderated by neighborhood
socioeconomic status?
4) Do the associations between LIHTC-created housing and outcomes persist among the subgroup of
households who receive housing subsidies through the Housing Choice Voucher program?


Photo: "Body Block 01 - Payne Avenue - Cleveland" by Tim Evanson is licensed under CC BY 2.0