Affordable or unaffordable? A Preliminary study of a reasonable social housing rental price range in Taipei City

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The central government in Taiwan enacted the Housing Act in 2011, in which social housing was firstly well-defined in the housing policy history. In the Article 3, social housing built by the government or private sector with subsidies from the government that is primarily rented. Hence, each local government is required to develop the pricing model based on the housing demand. However, Taipei City for instance, the average rental price of social housing is unified by 30% off market price and apply to any income levels households. It is questionable of whether certain standard could really meet the affordability of the disadvantaged groups. The past researches were mostly concentrated on the quantity and the distribution of social housing provision. There are few studies discussing about the rent setting system, which is probing whether the pricing is actually affordable or not. Therefore, this paper intends to examine that the social housing in Taipei City was unaffordable no matter in the past or now by using rent-to-income ratio. Furthermore, this research will review the target group, rent setting and providing mechanism in different countries. Through the case studies, Taipei City can learn the practice of other countries, and improve the problem of unaffordable social housing. According to above, this paper would practice one rent setting system of the countries, which is considered by similar economic and society structure to Taipei City, as a preliminary study of reasonable social housing rental price.
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