Income based apartment programs are supported by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. People with low income can apply for low-income apartments, and pay only one part of the rent. In most cases, the application process is very simple; your housing agency will tell you what documents you need to submit.
Affordable Housing Programs
The owners of multi-family homes designate low-income based apartments to residents with low income, for lower rents. Homeowners get financial benefits from the U.S. Government for being involved in these programs.
There are three separate programs for low-income and moderate-income households. The funds are not given directly to homebuyers and tenants; affordable housing funds are given to local government units or non-profit organizations.
These programs are designed to assist people with low income in finding suitable homes. The grants are provided to participating jurisdictions (local government units) to fund housing programs for people with very low income. First-time buyers are offered help by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The Homeownership Zone is a program that allows communities to reclaim blighted properties and create new neighborhoods of single-family homes. There are other programs similar to this one. For more information, visit the U.S. HUD website.
Privately owned subsidized housing – the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development helps the homeowners offer low rents to low-income tenants. The property owners get subsidies from the U.S. government.
Housing Choice Voucher – This program allows families with low income to find apartments or houses and pay the rent (one part of the rent, or the entire rent) by using vouchers. Sometimes, the tenants can use these vouchers to buy a house or apartment. These apartments have to meet certain standards, but they don’t have to be part of subsidized housing programs.
Public Housing – the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development help public housing agencies manage houses for tenants with low income and disabled people. Nearly 1,200,000 households are part of this program. More than 3,000 public housing agencies participate in the program.
How to Apply
Your housing agency will determine your eligibility. Your references will also be checked; if you have any practices or habits that may have detrimental effects on the environment and other tenants, your admission will be denied.
Your income will be the most important factor in determining your eligibility. Limits may vary, depending on the area where you want to live. That means you can be eligible in one area, but not in another. Your local HA will inform you of the income levels for the area where you want to live.
The application has to be in written form. Your housing agency representative will fill out your application. The following information will be necessary:
- Names of your family members, their birth dates, gender, and relationships to the head of the family;
- Present address;
- Phone number;
- Names of your previous landlords (and their addresses);
- The name of your bank and your employer;
- Other circumstances that may qualify you for selection preferences;
- The sources and total amount of your family’s anticipated income for the next year;
Your PHA will visit your current home to see how well you manage your household. If you have any questions, your HA representative will answer them. The HA representative can ask for other documents (tax return, birth certificates, your employer’s direct verification, etc.).
After this, you will get a written notification. If you are eligible, your HA will put you on a waiting list. Some people can get assistance immediately, but you will probably have to wait for a while. If you are ineligible, your HA will tell you why, and you can ask for an informal hearing, if you wish.
If you are eligible, and you accept the apartment, you will sign a lease with your housing agency. A security deposit will also be necessary.
Housing agencies have the discretion to give preferences, and these are included in the policy manual of the agency. You can ask about selection preferences and see if you qualify.