More than half of the population of the United States now lives paycheck to paycheck, and this only makes it harder to rent. As the state of the economy worsens, increasing numbers of people are looking for ways to save money on rent. Low-income housing has become a viable option for many who haven’t experienced tough economic times like this before. If you are one of these, you have a few options to choose from. Just be aware that the process of finding low-income housing can take some time. It might require your name to be added to a waiting list.

Applying with HUD

To begin the process, you will have to apply with the United States Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Applicants need to prove that they are eligible for the government housing programs that are available in the various states. You will have to bring paperwork with you proving that your income falls within qualifying levels. These include pay stubs, proof of child support payments, proof of social security payments, pensions and other items. Call ahead and bring all the necessary paperwork you will need during the first visit to save yourself time.

Section 8 Housing

You could receive a low-income housing voucher with the Section 8 or Housing Choice Vouchers program. These vouchers can reduce the amount of rent you owe based on your level of income and the maximum rent for the area you intend on living in. If you qualify, you can find your own rental house or apartment based on how much the voucher covers. Qualified voucher holders will be restricted to houses and apartment complexes with landlords who accept these vouchers.

Section 42 Housing

To provide an incentive for developers to build low-income housing units, the low-income housing tax credit program, or Section 42, was established. It was established to keep developers from charging over a certain amount in rent per month for their apartments or houses. The amount paid in rent is fixed with the Section 42 program, and it’s based on thirty to sixty percent of the median income in that county. If you qualify, you can rent an apartment unit or a single-family home built buy such a developer.