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Research Agenda

The mission of the research division of the National Housing Conference is to increase awareness of housing needs and to identify effective and promising solutions to housing challenges. Through our work, we aim to connect research directly to practitioners to impact housing policy and to bring federal perspective to local, regional and state affordable housing policy issues.

NHC’s research agenda is organized around the following areas:

Housing Affordability

Our two key housing affordability products, Housing Landscape and Paycheck to Paycheck, provide data and analysis that highlight affordability challenges and offer the housing community new ways to talk about state and local housing needs. In addition, we have analyzed the combined costs of housing and transportation and the impact on low- and moderate-income households. Building on that expertise, we continue to assess the impact of housing costs in the context of broader household budgets, including expenditures on food, child care, health care and other necessities.

Housing Intersections

We conduct research syntheses and best practices analyses around how housing serves as a platform for positive health, education and economic outcomes. We connect researchers with practitioners and translate research findings into actionable policy recommendations. Specific research projects focus on the intersections of housing and health, housing and education and housing and economic self-sufficiency.

Inclusive Communities

We analyze the needs for and impacts of inclusionary housing programs and assess opportunities for equitable local planning.  Our work includes online resources for local advocates, housing planners, elected officials, developers and others, as well as extensive case studies, research summaries and quantitative research around inclusionary housing.

Housing Demand

We examine the key economic and demographic trends that will shape the demand for housing generally, and the need for affordable or lower cost, housing specifically. These projects include analyses of the relationship between job growth and affordable housing needs, as well as the impact of demographic change—including the aging of the population and the growth of the non-white population—on the future demand for affordable housing.

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