More Project-Based Housing for Seniors and People with Disabilities
updated October 15, 2018

If you are a senior or a person with a disability and you have low income, you might qualify to live in certain housing developments where you would pay just 30% of your income as rent:

  • Some of these housing developments were funded by a program called Section 202. Section 202 housing is for seniors and some people with disabilities.
  • Other housing developments were funded by Section 811. Section 811 housing is only for people with disabilities.

Although no new projects are being developed under these programs, units that were funded by them in the past are still available in many buildings throughout the state.

The Section 811 Demonstration Project

There are newer Section 811 housing units for people with disabilities that are part of a demonstration project. These units are different than the older units described on this page.

Learn more about the Section 811 Demonstration Project.

How They Help

Both programs make housing more affordable for seniors or people with disabilities by limiting rent to 30% of income. For example, if your monthly income is $500 you would pay $150 (30% of $500) per month as rent.

Some Section 202 buildings have on-site care and support services, such as help with meals, housekeeping, and transportation. The services that are available depend on the building, so it’s important to ask when you apply.

Who Qualifies

To live in Section 202 or Section 811 housing, you need to prove that your income falls within certain limits, based on the median income of the area. The best way to learn about the exact limits in your area is to ask a local public housing authority (PHA).

In addition:

  • To live in a Section 202 project, you usually must be age 62 or older. In some cases, you may be under age 62 if you have a disability.
  • To live in a Section 811 project, you must have a disability that meets certain standards. Usually, if you get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), your disability will qualify. A doctor’s statement may also be enough, but the exact rules depend on the specific Section 811 housing development.

Finding a Place

To find housing options for seniors and people with disabilities, you can check:

  • The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) low-rent apartment search engine, and
  • Minnesota’s HousingLink search engine. When searching with HousingLink, go to the “Subsidized Housing” section and check the "Subsidized Housing (% of income, Project Based Section 8, Public Housing, Section 811/PRAD)" option. You can also check the "Seniors" and "Disabled" checkboxes if they apply to your family.

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