The Rental Assistance Program responds to the urgent need to assist elderly, low-income individuals with risk of homelessness as consequence of loss of funding for the Law 173 Program.
Puerto Rico Department of Housing’s Law 173 Program subsidizes rent for thousands of low-income, elderly individuals in 49 housing properties throughout the Island. After hurricanes Irma and María’s impacts, its funds have substantially decreased.
How does the Rental Assistance Program work?
- The Rental Assistance Program will have a duration of 24 months and it will assist tenants with the most precarious realities from housing properties currently in the Law 173 Program.
- Each tenant that wishes to benefit from the Rental Assistance Program must apply to occupy a rental unit as primary residence in one of the housing properties currently in the Law 173 Program, subject to availability.
- Once the housing property compiles all the required information and documentation for each of its applicants, it will submit all tenant applications to the Puerto Rico Department of Housing.
- Before awarding rental subsidy, the Puerto Rico Department of Housing, will evaluate each application rigorously to ensure each tenant complies with the Program eligibility requirements.
Who can participate in the Rental Assistance Program?
- For an individual to be eligible for rental subsidy under the Rental Assistance Program he or she must:
- Be 60 years or older;
- Have a household income categorized as “Low-income” (0-50% AMFI);
- Apply to occupy a rental unit as a primary residence;
- Apply to a rental unit located in a housing property currently in the Law 173 Program.
- Every elderly, low-income individual is eligible for the Rental Assistance Program if he or she applies to a rental unit that will serve as primary residence and is located in one of the 49 housing properties currently in the Law 173 Program.
- The applicant to the rental unit does not have to be a current beneficiary of the Law 173 Program.
- The Rental Assistance Program will prioritize applicants to rental units in housing properties whose Law 173 Program contract expires from 2020 to 2022.
- Once applicants to those rental units are served, the Program will prioritize applicants to rental units from housing properties located in municipalities with a low number of alternative and affordable housing for the elderly, as established in the Program Guidelines.