The number of American families that are, or are at risk of becoming, homeless or housing insecure remains stubbornly high. The problem persists, not due to lack of solutions, but for two primary reasons: political will and artificial budget divisions. The pay for success (PFS) model for financing public services offers an opportunity for state and local governments to help overcome these hurdles. This paper considers this potential. It describes how PFS has already been used to fund other types of housing interventions, summarizes the evidence on why housing matters for children and families, considers several evidence-based housing interventions that that could be funded through PFS, and discusses the complexities that such a project might face.
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