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Housing Options for Low-Income Seniors
Rents are rising, making it difficult for seniors on fixed incomes to be able to afford housing. In order to ensure that there is some affordable housing for seniors, the government funds several low-income housing programs.
The two main types of government-funded housing are public and subsidized. Public housing is housing owned by a housing authority, and the housing authority acts as your landlord. Subsidized housing is housing owned by a private landlord who receives subsidies in exchange for renting to low-income seniors. In both programs, your rent is calculated as a percentage of your income.
Each program has different eligibility requirements, and the exact requirements vary from state to state and program to program. In general, to be eligible, you must be above a certain age (62 for federally subsidized public housing) and below a certain income. To apply, you need to request an application from each housing authority or program you want to apply to.
Unfortunately, there are often more applicants than housing available, and the housing authority often puts applicants on waiting lists. Because of the wait, it is important to apply to as many different housing programs as you can, and to keep track of your applications and your place on the waiting lists.