How to Sign up for Low Income Apartments

There may be a wait for low income apartments.
There may be a wait for low income apartments. (Image: apartment building image by Christopher Dodge from

If your household has a low income, there are resources available to help you meet you basic needs, including housing. Many counties and major cities have a Housing Authority office that helps connect families and individuals in need with affordable apartment units, public housing or subsidized housing. Low-income apartments can provide a safe place to live, help reduce the number of homeless families and serve as a gateway to economic independence. While signing up for low-income apartments is a simple process, the wait for acceptance into a housing program can be long.

Contact your area’s housing authority office and/or the local U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development office (see Resources). Sometimes these offices are one in the same. You can find their contact information in the phone book. Areas with the service available can call 2-1-1, an information line, to attain the contact information free of charge. These offices can give you the paperwork you need to sign up for low income apartments.

Write your full name, the full name of your dependents and the full name of any other adults in the home on the application. You will also need to list personal information for everyone in the household, such as date of birth, place of birth and Social Security number.

List the sources of income and how much each adult in the home earns. Include all income earned from full-time and part-time jobs, as well as any side jobs such as babysitting. Include proof of income with the application if requested.

List your assets. This includes the amount of money you and other adults in the household have in savings accounts or investments and the value of real estate you own.

Indicate the type of assistance you prefer. For example, you can sign up for Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers or public housing.

Write down the name of apartment complexes that you want to live in and their addresses on the application.

Turn in your application.

Tips & Warnings

  • Proof of income includes paystubs, copies of checks received, records from personal bookkeeping files and bank statements.
  • Some areas have you fill out a pre-application so you can join a waiting list. Once you are at the top of the waiting list, you then submit a full application.
  • In some areas, you can submit applications online.
  • A Section 8 voucher can help you pay for all or part of your rent costs.
  • Some low-income apartments are nice and well taken care of, while others are a step away from being considered a slum. Before you list the names of apartments that have the cheapest rent on your application, make sure you see the locations in person to make sure the apartments meet your personal standards.

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