Housing Assistance for Low-Income in Alaska

There are several housing assistance programs in Alaska to help the homeless, people with disabilities, seniors, and low-income to obtain quality and affordable housing. Please keep reading this article for more information.

Alaska Housing Finance Corporation

The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation provides various rental assistance programs that help to address the most demanding housing needs of all residents. These programs work to ensure that the residents have access to quality and affordable housing. The programs include:

The Empowering Choice Housing Program

The Empowering Choice Housing Program is designed to meet the housing needs of residents displaced as a result of sexual assault, domestic violence, or dating violence. How will you know if you are eligible for this program? Your family income must not exceed 50% of the area median income. Is the program available in your location? Well, please note that this program is available in AHFC Voucher Program communities, including – Anchorage, Fairbanks, Homer, Juneau, Ketchikan, Kodiak, Sitka, Soldotna, Valdez, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, and Wrangell. For communities where the AHFC vouchers are not available, preferential placement will be offered on their public housing waiting lists. Wondering how you can apply for this program? First, you will need to request a referral from an approved program. For a referral to AHFC, please reach out to Alaska Network on Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault (DVSA). Once you get a referral, complete your application form. Download your application at https://www.ahfc.us/download_file/view/4802/649 and apply in your location. Submit your application to the AHFC office in your local area. You will be notified when an Empowering Choice Housing Voucher becomes available. You will then be required to answer some questions regarding your income, citizenship, date of birth, among others. You will also go through a briefing session that provides more information about the program. You will then receive your Voucher and public housing placement. For more information, please visit https://www.ahfc.us/publichousing/rental-programs/families-displaced-domestic-violence-or-sexual-assault.

The Housing Choice Voucher Program

The Housing Choice Voucher Program allows eligible low-income individuals and families in Alaska to lease privately-owned rental units to form the property owners. Who is eligible for this program? Eligibility for this program depends on the income limits for each applicant. You must ensure your income does not exceed 50% of the area median income. How does the program work? Once you meet the program requirements, you are placed on a waiting list. You will then be invited to a briefing session, designed to give you detailed information about how the program operates. Once you have gone through the briefing, the program will award you with a housing voucher. However, you should note that the rental amount for the unit must e reasonable for you to receive a voucher. In other words, your rental unit must pass the quality standards required. Once your rental unit has been approved, you will pay a portion of your monthly rent while the AHFC pays the remaining subsidy directly to your landlord. Want to apply for this program? Well, before you make an application, please ensure you have a look at the open waiting lists. You can then mail your application to the program location, accessible at https://www.ahfc.us/contact-us/housing-assistance-locations. For more information, please visit https://www.ahfc.us/publichousing/rental-programs/low-income-alaskans-renting-private-individuals.

Senior and Accessible Housing

The Senior and Accessible Housing provides housing assistance to seniors with a disability and whose incomes are below 80% of the area median income. Seniors eligible for this program include those 62 years of age or older. Submit your application to the program location, accessible at https://www.ahfc.us/contact-us/housing-assistance-locations. Applications for this program can be accessed in all the local offices. Do you require additional assistance due to disability? A reasonable accommodation is available to those in need of additional support because of physical or mental impairment. (https://www.ahfc.us/tenants/resources/fair-housing). please make inquiries at the local Alaska Housing Office for detailed information. Please visit https://www.ahfc.us/publichousing/rental-programs/seniordisabled-housing to learn more about the program.

The Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) program

The VASH program provides rental assistance to homeless veterans and their families. The goal is to meet the housing needs of eligible veterans. The program is available in all communities in Alaska that offer Housing Choice Vouchers. You can therefore apply at any Alaska Housing voucher program location with an open waiting list. For your application to be considered, you must be referred to Alaska Housing by Alaska VA Healthcare System (AVAHS). Visit https://www.ahfc.us/publichousing/rental-programs/homeless-veterans-and-their-families for more information.

The Moving Home program (MHP)

This is a rental assistance program that works to support individuals and families to transition from homelessness situations. You must be referred to Alaska Housing by the State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS). DHSS ensures that eligible families receive the supportive services they need to sort out their situation. see more about DHSS at http://dhss.alaska.gov/dbh/Pages/Initiatives/IntegratedHousing/Moving-Home-Voucher-Program.aspx. Are eligible for community-based, long-term services as provided by Medicaid or State-Funded services? Please visit https://www.ahfc.us/publichousing/rental-programs/alaskans-eligible-community-based-long-term-assistance to learn more about the program.

Mainstream Voucher Program

The Mainstream Voucher Program was designed to provide affordable housing and supportive services to individuals and families with disabilities. The goal is to help them transition from homelessness or institutional settings to quality housing. What are the eligibility requirements for this program? You must meet the definition of disability as described by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Your income must also not exceed 50% of the Area Median Income. To be considered, you must be homeless or at risk of facing homelessness, transitioning from an instructional setting, or at risk of institutionalization. To learn more about the program, please visit http://dhss.alaska.gov/dbh/Pages/Initiatives/IntegratedHousing/Mainstream-Voucher-Program.aspx.

Alaska’s Section 8 Housing Program

Alaska’s Section 8 program is designed to assist eligible low-income individuals and families have access to quality and affordable housing in the private housing market. The Alaska Public Housing Division administers this program, which is available in 12 communities in Alaska. How does the program work? Alaska Housing Finance Corporation maintains a waiting list for qualified applicants. The Alaska Housing ensures that applicants are eligible for the program before they receive housing vouchers. The qualified applicants are allowed to choose a housing unit in the private market and ensure it meets the quality requirements set by HUD. Once your housing unit has been approved, you’ll contribute 30% of your monthly income towards your rent while the Section 8 program pays the remaining as a subsidy directly to our landlord. Find out more at https://www.ahfc.us/pros/landlords/housing-choice-voucher-program.

USDA’s Single-Family Housing Direct Home Loans in Alaska

The USDA’s Single-Family Housing Direct Home Loans provides financial assistance to homeowners through loans. Your income must not exceed the low-income limits in your area. You must also demonstrate the willingness and ability to repay the loan when required. Want to know if your area is eligible for assistance? well, this program considers locations with less than 35,000. For more details, please visit the USDA Income and Property Eligibility website at http://eligibility.sc.egov.usda.gov/eligibility/welcomeAction.do?pageAction=sfpd. The loan is payable for up to 33 years, and the interest rate can be as low as 1%. Visit https://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/single-family-housing-direct-home-loans/ak to learn more about the program.

Alaska Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program

Alaska LIHEAP has federally funded that work to support the eligible low-income individuals and families who spend most of their income in paying utility bills. The program offers assistance, including weatherization, bill payment, and crisis assistance. LIHEAP helps you stay warm in the winter and cool during the summer. For families with inoperable heating or cooling equipment, the program is here to support you! Alaska LIHEAP helps you reduce the risk of experiencing health and safety problems such as fire, eviction, or illness. To be eligible for this program, you must be a resident of Alaska and be able to demonstrate the need for financial assistance. do you participate in SNAP, SSI, or TANF? Well, then you automatically meet the eligibility requirements for Alaska LIHEAP! Please visit https://www.benefits.gov/benefit/1411 for more information about the program.

Are Facing Foreclosure? Here Is What to Do

Failure to pay your mortgage is never an offense, especially if you are genuinely helpless. The first thing you should do when you are at risk of facing foreclosure is to contact your mortgage servicer or lender and explain your situation. it is important to keep records of what is said in your meetings. The next step is seeking a hosing counselor. Ensure you talk to a HUD-certified housing counselor. You won’t undergo any charges for the services provided. Beware of mortgage relief scams! Since you are facing financial difficulties, people are there to take advantage of you. Please read more about the mortgage relief scam alert at http://law.alaska.gov/press/consumer_alerts/2010/1210-mortgage.html. Learn more about the program at http://law.alaska.gov/department/civil/consumer/credit.html.

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