About that so-called Vienna housing model
from Grassroot Institute, June 26, 2023
Matthew Yglesias, a widely published journalist who has written a lot about housing, published an excellent article on May 30 about the so-called Vienna model of housing, which some Hawaii lawmakers have been looking at as a way to help resolve Hawaii's housing crisis.
Grassroot Institute research associate Jensen Ahokovi read the article — "What can we really learn about housing from Vienna?" — and here is his quick review:
"Saying that Vienna's housing model would work here in the U.S. is like comparing apples to oranges. Vienna does have loads of public housing, but it also has a private sector that's building homes at a greater rate than here in the U.S.
"Iglesias seems to imply that the abundance of private development is what keeps homes in Austria cheap, not Vienna's public housing. Plus, a lot of the homes they're building in Vienna wouldn't even be legal here because they're so small.
"Additionally, Vienna's model came about because of war and conflict that made private development unfeasible, unlike here where we've got builders itching to put up homes, but can't because of all the regulations.
"Iglesias finishes up by saying that even if we did try a Vienna-style model here, public projects almost always waste money. If we're really worried about people falling through the cracks, he thinks transfer payments are preferable to public housing projects."
Read: "What can we really learn about housing from Vienna?"