HUD to Investigate Perception of Small Area FMRs

Tomorrow, HUD will publish a notice in the Federal Register titled “30-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collections: Small Area Fair Market Rent Demonstration Evaluation.” The notice announces an information collection to determine perception of the shift from regular Fair Market Rents (FMRs) to Small Area FMRs among voucher holders and landlords.

For voucher holders, HUD will investigate whether new and current voucher holders understood how shifting to Small Area FMRs changed their housing options, whether voucher holders who moved searched in new neighborhoods, and whether voucher holders moved at a different rate.[1]

For landlords, HUD will investigate whether landlords were aware of the shift to Small Area FMRs, whether this affected their willingness to rent to voucher holders, and the level at which they set their rents.[1]

To investigate, HUD will interview 70 tenants and 35 landlords. Both groups will be interviewed in the areas served by the PHAs in the Small Area FMR Demonstration. Incentive payments of $20 for tenants and $40 for landlords will be made.

HUD seeks comments on the following: 1) Is the information collection necessary and does it have practical utility; 2) the accuracy of the information collection burden; 3) ways to enhance the quality of the information collected; and 4) ways to minimize the burden of the information collected. Comments will be due 30 days after the notice is published. The pre-publication notice can be found here.

[6/2/17 Edit – The notice has been published in the Federal Register, and comments are due on July 3, 2017. The notice can be found here.]

[1] – NAHRO notes that this information would have been useful to know before HUD mandatorily directed PHAs to implement Small Area FMRs in certain areas.

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