As the economy seems to be getting worse and worse, it’s no surprise that housing costs are inflating too. It seems nearly impossible to get budget-friendly housing anymore!
You hear stories left and right of people having to share small apartments while still paying a fortune. It’s scary enough just trying to handle monthly costs like bills and utilities before even considering renting or buying.
This housing cost crisis isn’t getting better anytime soon. But there are options for affordable housing that you might not have considered or maybe haven’t even heard about…
How to Find Affordable Housing
The government is fully aware of the housing crisis and has options to help. Whether you’ve looked into government aid before or not, it’s worth diving into again if you really need help.
Before moving forward, it’s important to understand that asking for help is okay. The housing market is painful to browse through right now. Don’t be ashamed for needing that help- you won’t be in this spot forever!
With all that said and done, let’s dive into some budget-friendly housing that you can actually afford.
Public Housing Agency (PHA)
The PHA was established to help individuals and families afford safe housing. This is mainly for people with low income, the elderly, and people with disabilities.
Your eligibility is based on your annual gross income, similar to most other government financial aid. In addition to your income, you also have to qualify as a person who fits the description of elderly, disabled, or responsible for others in your home. And finally, you have to be a U.S. citizen or be eligible for immigration status.
How to Begin
You have a local PHA in your town as well as about 3,300 PHAs across the country. This is who will be in charge of giving you the budget-friendly housing that you are eligible for.
For you to get the correct housing information for your town, you must contact your PHA specifically. Once you talk to your local PHA about your situation, they will send you on a track to get affordable housing.
First, they will show you how to fill out the application for public housing assistance. Once you fill that out, they should be able to tell you the programs you’re eligible for. Regardless of if you qualify for the housing you want, they will most likely offer you resources to help with your finances.
Depending on the size and need in your city, it may take some time to find you a spot even if you do qualify. In this case, your local PHA will help give you resources until you can move forward in your housing.
Another great option to check out is 211. By calling this number or going to 211.org, you can receive help for a variety of things.
This number was created to offer local and nationwide resources to those who need them. It’s free, completely confidential, and multilingual.
Through this service, you can be connected to local help for housing. You can even ask about local services that you need outside of housing like healthcare and food. Think of it as a way to connect you to a community that can help with exactly what you need.
For housing specifically, it might be worthwhile to call and ask what options they have for financial support. This could look like a range of different options from help with bills to communities and resources to partner with.
211 has helped connect millions of people to what they need and has worked to prevent homelessness. This is definitely worth a call or a web search to get the help you need!
This website is basically a catch-all of benefits that the government offers to people who need it. You can use the benefit finder tool to search for exactly what you need so that you can know where to start.
After you find what you’re looking for, it should offer information on how to apply. You won’t know what you’re eligible for until you apply, so make sure you’re diligent about the application process.
There are a few other ways the government helps with housing. See if any of these pertain to you and apply as soon as you can.
Covid-19 Rental Assistance
The delay of eviction for those renting during Covid-19 has expired and many people are left helpless because of it. If Covid-19 is still affecting your financial situation, the government may be able to provide some help with rent costs.
Supportive Housing & Transitional Shelters
Supportive housing is for desperate situations. Supportive housing is what you should consider if you’re worried about being homeless. If you need emergency support, there are places that can help.
Emergency shelters are one option that is always there when you need help. These shelters offer short-term stability to keep you off the streets in your time of need. These shelters will help you find housing and provide you with the resources you need in the meantime.
Transitional shelters are another form of temporary housing that allows people to stay for a longer amount of time. You can stay here for up to 2 years. In the meantime, these shelters will work with you to find housing that you can afford.
Stop stressing about housing and start applying for aid!
Living paycheck-to-paycheck is difficult, especially when you’re responsible for fulfilling your job and taking care of other people. It’s time to take action now to see if you’re eligible for any help.
Budget-friendly housing isn’t the easiest thing to find, so start with these applications and websites first. From there you can implement ways to save money or receive government aid in other ways.
If you aren’t eligible for government housing, there are other ways to receive aid from the government. Look into getting help with your groceries through SNAP/food stamps.
There are plenty of other options depending on what you need as well. Check out some of these government benefits and see if you might qualify for any of them. You never know until you apply!