Tribal Housing
updated March 28, 2024

Many different types of housing benefits — like help with rent or home loans, or living in a low-cost housing project — may be available to American Indians. Eleven tribes are located in Minnesota, and one Wisconsin tribe keeps an office in Minneapolis to help its members in Minnesota. Some types of help might be available to a member of any Indian tribe, not just the members of a tribe located in Minnesota.

Types of Help That Might Be Available

  • Emergency rental help
  • Ongoing rent help
  • Student housing assistance
  • Help for people who are experiencing homelessness
  • Low-cost rental housing
  • Low-cost housing development (leading to home ownership)
  • Housing for elderly people
  • Veterans housing
  • Housing with on-site support services
  • Home loans
  • Down payment help for a home loan
  • Low-cost loans for home repair and maintenance for very-low-income homeowners (often for repairing health and safety problems for the elderly)
  • Other creative programs to solve affordable housing problems

American Indians can get home-buying help with low down payments, easier financing, low interest rates, and no hidden fees using a Section 184 Indian Home Loan through the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). A Section 184 loan can be used to pay for building a new home, buying an existing home, remodeling, or refinancing a home both on and off tribal lands.

Since January 1, 2024, tribal per capita income payments are not counted by some state programs, like Minnesota Supplemental Aid (MSA) and Housing Support, making it easier for American Indians to qualify for these programs.

Who can get help?

Who gets help depends on the type of help, and is usually based on family income (a "family" can be one person) and the type of family (like a single-parent or two-parent household). "Low income" or "very low income" will vary by program and location, and whether the money for the program comes from the federal government or from a casino or other tribal business. Some programs only help tribal members living on the reservation, or close to the reservation. Other programs may help tribal members living anywhere in the State of Minnesota, or anywhere in the United States.

Get Help

Contact a tribe to learn what kind of housing help is available to its members.