How To Get Low-Income Housing With No Waiting List 

 October 5, 2021

By  AHH Staff

 Shelter is one of the basic human needs aside from food and clothing, but for some people, getting an affordable house can be quite tasking due to low income and a list of other factors. 

Low-income earners face a lot of restrictions with getting affordable housing since the rents are increased almost all the time and they also have to cater for food, school fees with those that have kids, and other basic needs apart from paying the house rent as at when due.

Although, facing the reality of low income does not mean you can not get affordable housing as the government has put in place affordable home rentals for low-income earners.

There are programs for low-income housing put together by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development but even for this, there is usually a long list of people awaiting approval.

For you to be able to get government housing assistance easily, it is advisable to seek information from the right agencies and authentic sources to be prepared to pursue getting government assistance on housing.

Steps To Find Low-Income Housing Without The Waiting List

It is possible to skip the long waiting list to be able to get the low-income housing of your choice and pocket by following some of the steps below in getting your own rental space.

➡️Research online

The internet is one place where you can get answers to any question or information that is needed and so you can research online for low-income housing near your location. There are tons of websites that one can sign up to get emails of available housing in your preferred location.

➡️Search for housing in less populated cities

Oftentimes, the waiting list for big cities may be too much and some are closed up because there is high demand. You can choose to make your search for affordable housing in smaller cities to be able to skip the long waiting list in the big cities. The less populated the city is the more chances of getting affordable housing very fast.

➡️Get in touch with the Public Housing Authority near you

This is very important and would also fast-track you to get affordable housing without waiting for so long. There is always a Public Housing Authority office situated in your area and you can approach the officials there, state your business and get feedback from them from time to time.

You would need to always be in constant discussion with the agency till your housing issue is resolved, this would allow them to rush up your housing process in time.

Available Low-Income Housing Programs

There are generally three different types of low-income housing programs in the United States for low-income earners, the elderly, disable, and other special needs people. Below are highlights of the different housing programs.

Public Housing

The public housing program is usually handled by the community Public Housing Authority (PHA) with permission from the federal government. The public housing authority assists low-income earners, the elderly, and people with disabilities to get comfortable housing with affordable rent.

There are several criteria that the applicant must fulfill to be eligible for the housing program. Some of which are, the applicant must be a US citizen and up to 18 years of age. The housing program may be available to a single person considered to be a low-income earner but it is majorly for families with low income and other people with special needs.

For the payment of rent, the tenant must pay about 30% of their monthly income. This used to be the normal tenant rent, but maybe otherwise stated depending on the rules of the public housing authority. To be able to get this type of housing fast, you need to explain your situation to the agencies as it will help you to skip the long list and make you a top priority.

Housing for persons with disabilities

Under section 811, persons with disabilities have a right to live normal and comfortable lives and they are provided with affordable housing under this section. The applicants are eligible when they fulfill several criteria such as low-income earner, disability status, and any other difficult living situation being faced currently by the applicant. This type of housing assistance also may sometimes require a waiting list depending on the community, city, and number of persons applying for the low-income housing scheme.

The tenant rent payment is only about 30% of the net income of the person with a disability or as discussed by the agency or property management company. It is important to note that, the landlord or property management company would not directly give out the housing to the disabled person, but they would be required to go through the appropriate local organization that deals with the section 811 low-income housing policy.

Project-based rental assistance

The section 8 project-based rental assistance program is made for people with low income and is at least 18 years of age. The rental assistance program enables tenants to get subsidies in rent from private landlords in the scheme. The affordable housing program is available for both single persons and families. The single person may be able to get a one-bedroom housing unit if it is available, but most times the housing units are available for families with low income.

For the rental rates, the tenants have to pay 30% of their income or 10% of their gross income depending on the rules of the community public housing agency. Section 8 project-based rental assistance is available for only US citizens nationwide.

Section 202 supportive housing for the elderly

This housing assistance is designed for the elderly or senior citizens since they are considered to have less income than any other individual in the country. To be able to live their lives well till the end, the elderly need to stay happy and continue to enjoy the basic needs of which housing is one of them.

Section 202 supportive housing for the elderly is sponsored by the government as they provide funds to private management companies and non-profit organizations to build affordable housing for the elderly.

The eligible age for senior citizens to enjoy this program is 62 years old and the rent payment is usually 30% of their net income. The elderly under this housing program may opt for accommodation with other housing facilities like food, transportation, bathing, and other independent needs.

Apply here

Section 8 housing choice vouchers

This housing program is very popular in the United States and it is used by many people. The section 8 housing choice voucher is handled by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and is available nationwide.

For rent fees, the tenant of this housing program will have to pay 30% of their household monthly income, and the rest of the payment is completed by the housing authority based on the voucher.

Before applying for this type of low-income housing program, it is advisable to check the income level of the state you wish to apply for because there are varying rules in each state concerning the family income level to be eligible for the low-income housing program. After obtaining the housing voucher, it usually goes to the landlord by the housing authority and tenants can always transfer their voucher to another housing authority after a full year.


Low-income housing can be easy to achieve provided you follow the necessary steps and do a lot of research in the state or city you plan to apply to. It is also important to provide accurate information on previous or current housing status, income level, family, and other necessary documents to be eligible for the low-income housing programs and even to get placed on the top list of applicants.

About the author 

AHH Staff

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  1. My mother is a 85 yrs old woman and I am 62 yrs woman who I am my mom care giver. We are about to be homeless by end of a month. We are both on Social Security and I work for IHSS (In-Home Supportive Services) part time. I been trying to seek Apartments, Duplexes but credit is below average. I also have a sister who is willing to live with and help paid rent. My sister has a full time job. Can you give me some resources that can help us? Thank you for your time. Sandra Ferrari

    Email address:

    1. Hello Sandra,

      The HUD Section 202 housing voucher provides help for the elderly, contact the PHA office nearest to you to start your application process. Also, you can read through our article on Section 202 housing for the elderlyto gain more insight on the steps to take I getting approved on time.

    2. The HUD Section 202 housing voucher provides help for the elderly, contact the PHA office nearest to you to start your application process. Also, you can read through our article on Section 202 housing for the elderly (link here) to gain more insight on the steps to take I getting approved on time.

  2. The first week of October I handed my application and all paperwork that was needed for the Housing Authority.
    The lady stated it it would take 2-4 weeks. She also said for me NOT to call them…they’ll call me.
    Today’s date is November 21.
    I have tried to call. Always said she’d call back.
    Never did. What can I do?

    1. Please visit the PHA office where you initially submitted your application to check on the progress. Also bear in mind that, there are constantly more applications than are available housing, and this could be the reason of the delay in getting your response.

    1. Kindly visit the local housing authority in your area to get started on your application process for section 8. Click here to to get a list of the PHA office in your state.

  3. Hello, My name is Sharece H
    I'm desperately looking for an affordable 4bdrm housing… I'm currently caring for my son whom was in a tragic car accident which left my baby boy paralyzed on his left side, so I'm taking care of him. Where I live now is way to costly for the income we receive. We're fairly new to San Antonio and I honestly need help into a solid and stable home for my 3 children.

    1. We are very sorry to hear this. You can apply for the Section 811 housing voucher for your son and also go through our article on housing assistance for single moms to get a faster housing response for your needs.

    1. Get in touch with the local housing authority in your area to apply for housing assistance. Read through the article on housing assistance for single moms here (link here) to understand how to apply and steps to take.

  4. How do I apply for a house voucher? My children and I are homeless and are in need of a home asap we live in a tore up tent

  5. I had got approved for emergency housing vouchers and I found a house to purchase for cheap. Will it help with that??

    1. This would help to quicken your approval process but ensure you contact your local housing authority where you started the registration to notify them of the progress you have made.

    1. We are sorry to hear about this but ensure to get in touch with the local housing authority for emergency housing assistance and how to apply. Click >here for a list of PHA office in your area.

  6. I wish things were as easy as you say! I am getting evicted Feb 1st and I have no where to go no one t0 turn to for help. I am disabled and need a decent place to live. I work hard and have all my life. I lost my job last year at age 51. I need help and I keep hearing of all this help for me. I am searching for help please help
    Thank You!

    1. If you are in urgent need for housing assistance as you stated you are getting evicted, you can apply for the rapid rehousing program here to get a faster response.

    1. Visit the local housing authority to apply for the Section 811 housing voucher which is made available for the disabled in order to get affordable housing assistance.

  7. Me and my wife are in need of a place to live. My mother in law passed away about a week ago from COVID-19. The landlord from the apartments wants us to move out. We go to court on the 18th of this month. We're looking for a house 2 bedrooms and 1 restroom

  8. I'm interested in this program need help with move in cost for myself single and on my own I work but don't make that much I live with my parents in Lynwood California 90262 have to be out in March of this year need a place near my work I'm 52 my car needs to be fixed I can't afford that either need help

    1. Hello,

      To apply for this program, visit your local Public Housing Agency (PHA). Some PHAs have long waiting lists, so you may want to apply at more than one PHA

  9. Hello my name is Linda cruz and my husband and I live in a garage because we can't afford alot of money for a apartment we both receive SS inco.e do we qualify for help to get a low income apartment.

    1. Hi Linda,

      To apply for a Housing Choice voucher, contact a public housing agency in your state. If you need more assistance, contact your local HUD office. You will need to fill out a written application or have a representative of your local PHA help you

  10. I have custody of my 13yr old grandson I have been forced out of my apartment that I lived in for 24yrs now I can't afford to move I am now homeless can anyone help me Please

  11. What are people to do if Landlord’s are not willing to take Section 8?because that’s the scenario out here people are losing their vouchers due to a lack of homes accepting them.I don’t know if I have my voucher anymore and I can’t get in contact with my worker.Since the pandemic it’s like even they are not keeping up with their consumers and their not responding back to’s like at this point what do I do?I had a house fire Dec 8th and the home is unlivable and the landlord got rid of my dog and threw all of my things away.before the fire my 5 month old grandson passed away then the fire and I just watched my Daddy pass away in the hospital I’m so numb and lost and homeless my whole life was thrown away and I don’t know what to do!im hurt depressed irritated frustrated stressed out can’t sleep or eat I’m swamping out here I’ve called so many agencies with no luck and now I see no future I was working in 2020 making 2,500 every 2wks I couldn’t get my unemployment or PUA because they put misconduct I tried to fight it but it was so much hoopla I couldn’t try anymore can anyone help please?

    1. Hi Bianca,


      Under the Housing Act, there is no provision requiring a landlord to accept Section 8 vouchers. However, please visit your local housing authority for help as regards your condition.

  12. My son is disabled and has applied for section 8 housing. He is currently on a waiting list for one location in San Bernardino County, California but has never received a voucher. Is there something else he needs to do to get a voucher and not just placed on a list for 1 location?

    1. Hi Brenda,

      Applicants for section 8 housing are usually placed on a waiting list that may take more than 1-2 years. During this time, the applicant can also choose to accept project-based vouchers. Also, check with your Public Housing Authority.

  13. I'm a single mom of three iv been evicted from my home and now homeless and carless I have a full-time job n currently staying in a motel .. I have medical conditions n need help with housing asap living in motel is causing my 7 yr old daughter alot of anxiety ….

  14. I lost my apartment due to black mold was hospitalized for 10days. Had bacteria minagastes in the brain and spinal. Been homeless over a year they never move me to another apartment.
    Was forced to leave.

    1. Hello Ricky,

      Get advice from your local housing authority If you’re homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless, your local housing authority is likely to have a duty to help you stay in your home or find accommodation. They may also have a duty to house you depending on your circumstances, such as if you have children who depend on you. Additionally, visit if you have more inquiries.

  15. I am trying to get on some kind of housing, matter fact,im going to the office today,im on disability and where had been living well isn’t the best of a drug free place and they kicked me out

    1. Hi Rachel,

      HUD’s Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program helps people with disabilities afford rental housing in the private market. Please visit your local housing authority for more information.

  16. I am on disability for epilepsy. I would greatly appreciate any help with section 8

    Thank you

    1. If you have been diagnosed with epilepsy and you can’t work and you expect to be unable to work for at least 12 months you can file a claim for Social Security disability benefits. Social Security disability benefits can provide money that you need to pay for things like housing, bills, food, and other expenses.

  17. I lost my job and apt. 2 years ago due to covid. I'm having a hard time getting back on track
    Do I qualify for this?

    1. Hi Sheila,

      If you have lost your job or income due to impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, you may qualify for housing assistance. Please contact your local housing authority for more information. You may also read up on our article here for more insights.

    1. Hi Mildred,

      As a single mother with kids. You should qualify for housing assistance for single mothers. Please visit for more details and also go through our article here on housing for single mothers for more information.

  18. My husband passed away December 9th I can't afford to rent that we paid when we was together in the same house I get disability and I need a one-bedroom place for myself I can't stand to live in the house he passed away in it's mentally torturing me and I can no longer afford it and I need to be on the housing list so 30% of your income I got until March 3rd to find a place of 2022

  19. Im homeless my home burned down 7/11/2021 and i have nothing living with my daugther and her husband and her son and wife with 3 kids and im disable and she has only 3 bedroom i need my own place to live in i lost everything i had.i really need the section 8 housing voucher and a house in the petersburg Va area

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