The Housing Research and Policy Program was established in 1982 (originally as the Housing Policy Research Project). Its goals are to develop and maintain a database of housing related information, provide reports and analyses of significant housing trends and issues, and undertake and support research that contributes to the field of urban studies and the solution of housing problems in the Cleveland area. Local foundations have been major partners of the Housing Research and Policy Program by providing funding support for its startup and for a range of projects focused on strengthening neighborhoods and developing housing in the city of Cleveland.
The Housing Research and Policy Program's primary database consists of computerized files produced by local county government concerning real estate. These files, acquired annually, include records of deed transfers, property characteristics, taxes, and mortgages. The Center has conducted numerous studies spanning local, state, and national topics. (Click here for a full list.) Studies of particular note are studies of the movement of home sellers and buyers, which, in 1996, resulted in a change to the IRS code governing home seller capital gains. The data files are used for research by students and faculty at Cleveland State and other universities.
The Program's data are augmented by census data, computerized land parcel maps, and GIS capabilities maintained by the Northern Ohio Data & Information Service, a part of the Levin Collegešs research initiative.
The Housing Research and Policy Program emphasizes the production of studies and reports for use by elected officials, policy analysts, planners, nonprofit development corporations, and the private sector (developers, lenders, appraisers, real estate brokers). Special efforts are given to working with members of the media to facilitate communication of housing issues to the general public.