Alabama has several housing assistance options for low-income families and people with disabilities. People eligible for these programs can choose from rental assistance and mortgage programs for housing in rural and city areas. There are housing authority offices for each county that can help potential applicants figure out which program is right for them. The contact information for these offices is available on the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website, among others.
Section 8, which is a federal program that local offices handle, provides rental assistance in Alabama. Section 8 provides vouchers to low-income families to cover a portion of their rent. People receiving assistance are required to pay 30 percent of their monthly income toward their rent, and the vouchers cover the difference up to fair market rent values for that area. For example, if the monthly income of a family is $2,000 and fair market rent for the area is $900, the family will pay $600, and the Section 8 voucher will pay $300. Section 8 properties simply charge qualified families 30 percent of their monthly income for rent. The family's income must be below 50 percent of the area's median income to qualify. These figures vary depending on family size. Section 8 waiting lists can be long for vouchers and income-based properties, so applicants should check with the county housing authority for waiting list times.
There are several mortgage assistance programs in Alabama for low-income families. HUD offers homes at lower prices with smaller down payments, and there are less strict income guidelines for HUD homes. Several cities offer down payment assistance programs for homebuyers. The U.S. Department of Agricultural Rural Development offers rural home financing assistance directly to families with 80 percent or less of the country's median income who do not have suitable housing or financing available. This program gets low-income families financing for homes in rural areas at extremely low interest rates so that the payments are manageable. Section 8 also allows vouchers to pay for a portion of mortgage payments in some areas. Applicants should check with the local county housing authority to see what is available.
Housing for People with Diabilities and the Elderly
Elderly people and people with disabilities qualify for more programs in addition to the ones previously mentioned. The U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development offers a home repair grant program to elderly applicants over the age of 62 who would be unable to pay back a loan for necessary home repairs. The Alabama Independent Living Centers have programs for low-income people with disabilities to help them find affordable assisted living housing. The Alabama Public Housing Agency offers affordable and safe housing for elderly and disabled people as well as low-income families. Potential applicants should check with these offices to see what is available to them.
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