Whenever there are economic ups and downs, lay-offs and job cuts, maintaining a decent apartment rental becomes difficult. Today, several people are being forced to rethink the choice of homes they can afford and most of the time it includes downgrading the kind of house you may be living in. Keeping your financial condition in mind, you can as well choose income-based apartments. These are nothing but apartments where you can stay on rent, but the rent is calculated depending on your earnings. The main advantage is that you don't need pay too high a rent, but on the downside, there are several rules and regulations which apply. You can be assured of a decent and safe housing The following paragraphs will give you some vital tips on the rules and regulations applicable.
How to Apply for Income-based Apartments
The first step of applying for an income-based apartment is contacting a representative of U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or one of the local housing agencies (HAs) in your locality and find out the rules applicable. The rent of apartments available with the HUD are usually the lowest, as they are backed with Federal grant. The officials in the HA finds cheap apartments for you and negotiates the amount you can afford. In case you find an apartment to your liking, but can't afford it, the department helps you pay the difference.
Income-based apartments can only be availed by low-income individuals and families. Whether you fall in that low-income group or not, that's determined by the HUD depending on certain factors like your gross annual income, whether you are a person with disability or an elderly person and if you are a citizen of the U.S. or an immigrant. Your rent depends on the anticipated income of all the adult members of your family. There are some deductions from this income, for instance, $480 for each dependent, $400 for any elderly family, or a person with disabilities, etc. Moreover, the HA would also check credit history and references so as to ensure that you are good tenants. Depending on the area you choose to live in, the income limit with which you may be qualified for this scheme would vary.
Working of the Application Process
You need to write an application and fill up a form given to you by a representative of the HUD so as to apply for a low income apartment. The representative would then collect your personal information like your name, the names of other persons who would reside with you, their and your date of birth, the relationship with the head of the family and their sex. You would also need to provide your telephone number and present address. The characteristics of your family would also need to be furnished like if you are veteran or a senior citizen. Other documents include the name and address of your previous landlord, employer and bank, and an approximate figure of your family's income. You would need to produce documents like your birth certificate, tax returns so as to substantiate whatever you have written in the application is true.
If you're eligible you would be provided with a written notification and your name would be published among the list of persons who have applied (of course this won't be the case if the department can help you out immediately). As and when your name is put up on the waiting list, the representative would get in touch with you. If you are found ineligible, the department must give reasons for the same and if you want, you can have an informal meeting with the representative concerned.
While filling up the form, make sure that you go through the form carefully and understand what's expected. Ensure that you don't leave any part blank and all information provided should be accurate. Try and finish the paperwork as soon as possible as there are several hundreds of people like you who are looking income based apartments. Keep checking with the representative regularly to know the latest updates on your application.
So, if you are facing a crisis of funds and are looking for some funding from somewhere, you can go for income-based apartments as a portion of the rent would be paid by the government. If you get shortlisted for a low-income apartment, you can live there as long as you honors the lease.