Verdict on Rent Control

Essays on the economic consequences of political action to restrict rents in five countries

Why has support for rent control survived so long? What is wrong with it? What are its effects, both short- and long-term? Who suffers? Who gains?

These are some of the questions tackled by the eminent economists in this volume of essays. Each author examines the system of rent control in his country at varying points in time, from 1929 (Professor Hayek: Austria), through 1946 (Professors Milton Friedman and George J. Stigler: San Francisco and New York), 1948 (Count Bertrand de Jouvenel: Paris), 1952 (Professor Frank Paish: Great Britain), to 1971 (Dr Sven Rydenfelt: Sweden).

All come to the same broad conclusion: that the longer governments allow rent controls to continue, the more distorted will housing markets become and the more governments will have to intervene in them, legislatively, administratively, and financially. F. G. Pennance, of the University of Reading, draws 'devastating' lessons from the experience of these five countries.

 

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