Permanent supportive housing helps solve our country’s homelessness crisis by improving housing stability and reducing the use of public services. The permanent supportive housing approach is backed up by promising evidence, but it can face barriers to implementation because of a lack of political will and budgetary constraints. Some local governments are exploring a financing model called pay for success (PFS), which shifts the financial risk from traditional funders (typically a government) to alternative investors, such as foundations or banks. As of 2018, PFS had funded seven supportive housing interventions.
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Getting the Most Out of Your Community’s Administrative Data
This brief was revised October 11, 2019. Box 3 on page 14 was changed to better explain the Denver SIB project and to correct and expand the list of data sources.
Pay for success (PFS) shifts the risk of funding a program from traditional funders (usually a government) to investors that are repaid if the intervention achieves predetermined outcomes. PFS doesn’t work for all programs or in all contexts (Milner et al. 2016).