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One of the biggest challenges for students of housing is understanding the financial principles which underpin the place of housing in the wider economy. By taking a political economy approach, Peter King's "Understanding Housing Finance" makes the basic principles of the subject accessible, without requiring detailed prior knowledge of economics or financial systems. The book explains housing finance by exploring the way in which markets and governments react together. It takes a conceptual approach to consider the advantages and limits of housing markets and why governments intervene. The consequences of intervention are explored in detail using examples of housing subsidy systems and policy mechanisms such as rent control, housing allowances and subsidies to owner occupation. This is a key reference for students on housing and planning courses at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. The book's approach means that its relevance is not confined to one particular housing system, but is useful for those studying housing finance in most developed and developing countries.