Hud Releases $710 Million To Help Low-Income Elderly And People With Disabilities
To enable senior citizens and people with disabilities to find affordable housing, more than $710 million in housing assistance has been announced by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The grants will help the nation’s very low-income elderly and people with disabilities find decent, safe affordable housing.
HUD’s Section 202 program grants of $574.8 million help expand the supply of affordable housing with supportive services for the elderly. It provides very low-income elderly with options that allow them to live independently but in an environment that provides support activities such as cleaning, cooking, and transportation.
In addition to funding the construction and rehabilitation of projects to create apartments, HUD Section 202 grants will subsidize rents for five years so that residents will pay only 30% of their adjusted incomes as rent.
To be eligible for the assistance, a household must be classified as “very low- income,” which means an income less than 50% of the area median. Nationally, based on 50% of the national median family income with an applicable adjustment for household size, a one-person household would need to have an income equal to or less than $20,300 a year. HUD provides two forms of Section 202 funds to non-profit groups:
Capital advances. This money, which covers the cost of developing the housing, does not need to be repaid if the housing is available for occupancy by very low-income seniors for at least 40 years.
Project rental assistance. This money covers the difference between the resident’s contribution toward rent and the cost of operating the project.
Section 811 Grants of $135.8 million will assist very low-income people with disabilities.
This housing, most of which will be newly constructed, typically is small apartment buildings, group homes for three to four people per home, or condominium units. Residents will pay 30% of their adjusted income for rent and the federal government will pay the rest.
The grants are awarded under HUD’s Section 811 program, which provides housing for households with one or more very low-income individuals, at least one of whom is at least 18 years old and has a disability, such as a physical or developmental disability or chronic mental illness.
The term “person with disabilities” also includes two or more people with disabilities living together, and one or more persons with disabilities living with one or more live-in attendants. The program allows persons with disabilities to live independently in their communities by increasing the supply of rental housing with the availability of supportive services.
To be classified as “very low-income,” a household income cannot exceed 50% of the area median income. However, most households that receive Section 811 assistance have an income less than 30% of the area median. Generally, this means that a one-person household will have an annual income of about $12,180.
HUD provides the Section 811 funds to non-profits in two forms:
Capital advances. This is money that covers the cost of developing the housing. It does not need to be repaid as long as the housing is available for at least 40 years for occupancy by very low-income people with disabilities.
Project rental assistance. This is money that goes to each non-profit group to cover the difference between the residents’ contributions toward rent and the cost of operating the project.
HUD is the nation’s housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS.
The Department also promotes economic and community development as well as enforces the nation’s fair housing laws.