Institute for Housing Studies

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DePaul University

Geoff Smith , Executive Director

The Institute for Housing Studies (IHS) is an applied research center situated in the Real Estate Center at DePaul University. IHS’s mission is to provide housing and community development practitioners, government agencies, and community-based organizations with reliable, impartial, and timely research and data about the state of affordable housing and neighborhood economic health. Annually, IHS typically provides hundreds of hours of direct technical assistance to such constituents. The Institute’s work focuses on issues related to the preservation of affordable rental housing and understanding neighborhood market conditions. IHS’s research helps housing and community development practitioners understand often rapidly changing conditions in local housing markets, influences policy decisions, helps measure the impact of policy interventions, and raises awareness of emerging affordable housing and place-based community development issues.

IHS accomplishes this mission through:

Data Collection – IHS manages an extensive Data Clearinghouse that brings together public and private data on housing market activity. Datasets include transaction-level data on property sales, mortgage recordings, foreclosure activity, property listing and sales, and property characteristics in the Chicago region including Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will Counties. The Institute also collects and regularly updates regional, census tract-level data on residential vacancy from HUD/USPS and historical demographic and socio-economic data from U.S. Census Bureau and American Communities Survey. IHS collects and works with other local administrative data sets on issues such as crime, building permits, and business licenses. IHS also works with program data collected by partner community-based organizations and enhances it with data from the Institute’s Clearinghouse.

Applied Research – IHS mines the rich data collected in its Data Clearinghouse to produce applied research and data indicators that inform the local and national policy debates around the preservation and production of affordable rental housing and the health of neighborhood housing markets. This information is connected to IHS’s audience of housing and community development practitioners through its web site which includes a Housing Market Indicators Data Portal tracking 16 data indicators of housing market health.

Community Engagement – IHS maintains strong relationships with key local and national housing and community development practitioners. These active relationships inform the Institute’s research and connect its work to policy, practice, and the issues facing neighborhoods today. IHS works with housing and community development stakeholders to provide technical assistance that helps them apply the Institute’s research and data to their day-to-day work.

Amador Castro
Research and Policy Analyst
Photo of Sarah Duda
Sarah Duda
Deputy Director
Yiwen Jiao
Research and Data Analyst
Evelyn Ryan
Communications, Policy, and Outreach Assistant
Photo of Geoff Smith
Geoff Smith
Executive Director


March 31, 2024
Three NNIP partners and Urban Institute’s NNIP team were featured in the recent HUD Cityscape issue, Local Data... [read more]
May 2, 2022
In May 2022, the Institute for Housing Studies (IHS) at DePaul University... [read more]
January 2021
One of the unique characteristics of the National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership (NNIP) is that the network was founded by the partner organizations and it continues to be led by an Executive... [read more]


March 5, 2024
Blog post - By: Institute for Housing Studies

Institute for Housing Studies

Blog Post
November 28, 2023
Blog post - By: Institute for Housing Studies

Institute for Housing Studies

Blog Post
November 16, 2023
Presentation - By: Geoff Smith, Roberto Requejo

Institute for Housing Studies

Chicago Slides
November 9, 2023
Meeting Materials - By: National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership

Institute for Housing Studies , Center for Urban and Regional Affairs

Framing page
May 26, 2023
Blog post - By: Institute for Housing Studies

Institute for Housing Studies

Blog Post

Partner Webinars

December 31, 1969

This NNIP-hosted webinar illustrated two examples of how advocates and affordable housing developers and investors can make use of local data on unsubsidized affordable housing to create tailored... [read more]

Presenters Laura Abernathy, National Housing Trust, Geoff Smith, Institute for Housing Studies, Roberto Requejo, Elevated Chicago, Jennifer Newcomer, Colorado Futures Center, Jennie Rodgers, Enterprise Community Partners
December 31, 1969

... [read more]

Presenters Geoff Smith, Institute for Housing Studies at DePaul University, David Harris, Urban Strategies Council, Jocelyn Gama, Urban Strategies Council, Jacob Virges, Urban Strategies Council, Jennifer Newcomer, Colorado Futures Center, Charles Bruner, Child Equity