Vincent Reina: Sheltered from Eviction? Subsidized Housing Programs and Evictions

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Vincent Reina (B.S. URS '02) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of Pennsylvania.  His research focuses on urban economics, low-income housing policy, household mobility,  neighborhood change, and community and economic development. Reina's work has been published in various academic journals, such as Urban StudiesHousing Policy Debate, and Journal of Housing Economics. In 2017 he helped the City of Philadelphia develop its framework and strategy for preserving its stock of existing subsidized housing, and in 2018 worked with the City of Philadelphia to write its first citywide housing plan.  He was given the award for Best Dissertation in Public Policy and Management by the Association of Public Policy and Management (APPAM) and was recently selected for the APPAM 40 for 40 fellowship.  Reina is a 2018 Visiting Scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, and a 2018 Lincoln Institute for Land Policy Scholar. Reina was previously a Fellow at the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy at New York University (NYU), a Research Associate at the Lusk Center for Real Estate at the University of Southern California (USC), a Coro Fellow, and worked at the Local Initiatives Support Corporation and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  He holds a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Management from USC, an M.B.A. with a concentration in Economics and Real Estate Finance from NYU's Stern School of Business, an M.Sc. in Comparative Social Policy from the University of Oxford, England, and a B.S. with honors in Urban Studies from Cornell University. 


Housing affordability and eviction are intertwined, yet much remains unknown about how policy responses to increase affordable housing affect the local dynamics of eviction. Taking a look at a framework for understanding how supply-side subsidy programs in the United States may impact the incidence of eviction filing. We apply this novel framework in a descriptive analysis of 9 years of eviction filing in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Overall, we find theoretical and practical support for the hypothesis that tenants in subsidized multifamily housing are less vulnerable to eviction than tenants in similar unsubsidized properties, but we find those protections vary between subsidy programs. Namely, we find public housing and project-based rental assistance properties are associated with decreases in the incidence of eviction filing, whereas the findings for Low-Income Housing Tax Credit properties are inconclusive. We cannot treat subsidized housing programs as a universal solution to eviction, but both theory and our analysis suggest it is an important tool for lowering eviction.

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