August 9, 2020

Low Income Housing – An Overview of Affordable Housing Options For People Who Have Low Incomes

The US Department of Housing and Human Development, HUD, exists to provide and maintain adequate housing for those individuals and families that are not financially in a position to otherwise support themselves in terms of a home. Unfortunately countless US families have found themselves in a dire situation economically due to the ongoing impact of the recession. Low income housing offers a safety net whereby a major worry can be removed.

Low Income Housing

There are in fact a number of options open to households which currently have an income below the national average, this includes public housing, section 8, section 203, and rent subsidies. The various programs available will in part depend upon the area in which a family resides as well as their actual income.

Public housing exists to ensure that as few families as possible end up on the streets or separated and living with relatives. We should not think that public housing would be properties that are less than desirable and in run down neighbourhoods. Today public housing is available in various forms and sizes, this includes high rise apartments as well as individual town houses.

To qualify for public housing the person or family must have an income of eighty per cent or less than the median in their area. As a median income will vary from region to region, so does the availability of public housing programs. Application for this type of assistance should be made at a local Public Housing Agency office or HUD office.

A recent addition to the schemes issued by the HUD is the Home Affordable Modification program. This has been set up to assist those homeowners that are facing foreclosure remain in their homes. Today there are record numbers of properties undergoing foreclosure and the federal government is all too aware of the devastating impact this has on communities as well as the country’s economy. It is possible to be given information on what assistance would be made available under this program by contacting your local HUD field office.

The section 203b program allows low income families to afford their own homes. Under this option an individual may be entitled to borrow as much as 95 per cent of the total value of the property. The HUD would become a co-signature of the loan so that if a default occurs the department pays the balance and then takes possession. The program has allowed home ownership to become a reality for families who would otherwise have had to remain in rental property.

The Section 8 program has been designed to address the problems facing the most in need. It offers housing vouchers for families who have an income fifty per cent or less of an areas median level. This is a scheme that has already been taken up by a large number of families and has provided the breathing space necessary to ensure a basic standard of living.

There may also be the possibility of being given assistance through a non profit organisation, for example a church or community group. These organisations are able to receive funds from various government subsidies which can then be passed on to tenants of properties.

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