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Directorate for Public Governance

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Decentralisation and inter-governmental relations in the housing sector

Based on a survey, this paper presents new data on the decentralisation of the housing system and co-ordination mechanisms across levels of government, focusing on the provision of social housing. Decision-making in social housing tends to be more devolved to sub-national actors, as compared to other key public services. Policy decision making tends to be more centralised, while sub-national governments and housing providers have more control over decisions regarding the inputs, outputs and monitoring of social housing. Governments globally have implemented a mix of housing policy interventions. Demand side interventions include tax allowances and subsidies to facilitate the purchase of a home or the provision of social housing in the rental market to those in need. Interventions to influence the supply of housing are generally aimed at housing developers or sub-national governments, to stimulate housing construction. There are a number of policy tools readily available to sub-national governments to improve housing outcomes, including the implementation and reform of taxes on immovable property and the relaxation of restrictive land use regulations.

Published on May 25, 2020

In series:OECD Working Papers on Fiscal Federalismview more titles