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Safe & Affordable Housing For Seniors on Social Security: 10 Options

Safe & Affordable Housing For Seniors on Social Security: 10 Options

Finding housing for seniors on social security can be difficult, but we have done the work for you. Keep reading to find a program that could work for you!


Finding affordable housing for seniors on Social Security has become an enormous challenge in recent years. The average monthly Social Security benefit is around $1,700 but the average national rent for a one bedroom apartment is around $1,400. Since landlords always want tenants to make 3x the rent, that can seem impossible!

Thankfully, there are government and non-profit programs specifically for housing seniors! Additionally, there are many apartment complexes that are 55+ including some that are purposely affordable housing for seniors on social security. 

Government Housing for Seniors on Social Security

Many of the government housing programs fall under the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), but a few are managed by other departments such as The Department of Agriculture. Listed below are government housing programs and details on how to access them. 

Public Housing 

Public housing for seniors offers support to older adults relying on Social Security. Managed by local public housing authorities, these developments provide affordable rental units specifically designed for seniors, typically aged 62 and older. Residents pay rent based on their income, often set at 30% of their Social Security income, making these housing options more financially accessible. 


Eligibility varies by public housing authority but typically to be eligible you must: 

  • Be a citizen or have eligible immigration status
  • Pass a background check
  • Make around 50% of the median income for your city

 For more information and to apply, please visit a public housing authority near you.

Section 8 Vouchers 

For eligible seniors, the Housing Choice Voucher Program assists in covering a portion of their rent, ensuring that housing costs remain within their means. Seniors receiving Social Security benefits can apply for Section 8 vouchers through their local public housing authority, allowing them the flexibility to choose suitable housing in the private market. 

Section 8 Vouchers are managed by HUD and the eligibility is the same as public housing (listed above). For more information and to apply, please visit a public housing authority near you.

Section 202 Housing 

Section 202 housing refers to a specific program under HUD. Section 202 housing is designed to be affordable for low-income seniors. Rent is typically set at 30% of the tenant’s income and the housing usually includes amenities with seniors in mind. 

Section 202 Housing is managed by HUD, so the eligibility is the same as public housing (listed above). For more information and to apply, please visit a Public Housing Authority near you.

USDA Rural Housing Programs

USDA Rural Housing programs offer support for seniors reliant on Social Security in rural areas, providing opportunities for affordable and secure housing. The USDA’s initiatives create affordable homes in rural areas, many of which have reduced rent. For more information, you can contact the USDA Rural Housing property directly.


Non-Profit Housing for Seniors on Social Security

Navigating the world of senior housing can be overwhelming, especially for those with limited financial resources. Non-profit housing aims to ease those worries by offering affordable rents, clear eligibility guidelines, and often dedicated staff to help you through the process. Let’s look at some options.

Home Sharing Programs 

Home sharing programs for seniors offer a creative solution to address housing challenges. Home sharing programs match older adults with compatible individuals willing to share living arrangements.

These programs are often managed by non-profits and aim to create living situations that work for everyone. Seniors with extra space in their homes can benefit from companionship, additional income, or assistance with daily tasks, while those seeking affordable housing find a supportive living environment.

These arrangements often involve a careful matching process based on preferences and compatibility, creating a sense of community and shared responsibilities. Contact your local Area Agency on Aging for more information about home sharing programs in your area.

Volunteers of America 

Volunteers of America (VOA) is a national non-profit organization that addresses housing needs, including the housing needs of seniors on social security. VOA has a network of over 20,000 rental units in 42 states.

VOA housing provides affordable and supportive living arrangements for seniors. Additionally, VOA housing often includes services that cater to the needs of seniors. For more information and to find a VOA property near you, please visit the Volunteers of America website


Mercy Housing 

Mercy Housing is a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to creating affordable housing communities for individuals, families and seniors. Mercy Housing develops and manages affordable housing properties across the United States.

To learn about eligibility and apply, please contact your regional Mercy Housing office.

Human Good 

Human Good is a non-profit organization that assists seniors in California, Delaware, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington with affordable housing. Eligibility information is not available online, but the website does give application instructions.

You can find properties in their directory and submit an application to any property that is accepting applications. Please note, all applications must be printed, completed, and mailed in. 

Good Samaritan Society 

Good Samaritan Society is a non-profit focused on meeting the needs of seniors. One of their many services is affordable senior housing. Good Samaritan Society has affordable housing for seniors on Social Security in 18 states and includes independent and assisted living services. All locations can be found here

Rental Housing for Seniors on Social Security

Rental Units for seniors are located throughout the United States. Because most rental complexes are privately owned the units are often market price. However, some rental units are specifically designed to be affordable for seniors. After 55 is a wonderful search tool for rental units for seniors. You can filter by location, housing type, and affordability. 

Finding Housing for Seniors on Social Security

The above programs are some of the most well known, but other local programs may exist. There are multiple online resources for finding programs for seniors. For your conveience, we will go over a few here.


Eldercare is an online database for programs for seniors by city, state, or zip code. It is managed by the United State’s Administration on Aging and is a wonderful tool to find housing and other services. Additionally, Eldercare can help you find your nearest Area Agency on Aging. Area Agency on Aging is located nationwide and could help connect seniors to resources.

National Resource Center on Native American Aging

The National Resource Center on Native American Aging provides an online locator for services. Most of these services are offered by tribe and sometimes housing is offered. To find housing services for Elder Native Americans, please visit their website

A Place for Mom

A Place for Mom is a company that will assist you in finding senior housing for free. A Place for Mom connects you with a Senior Living Advisor who recommends options based on what you are looking for. To find out more about their services, please visit their website

Relief Recap

It can be difficult to find housing for seniors on Social Security. With limited income, finding an affordable place to live is crucial for seniors’ quality of life. This is a national problem with some national solutions! The Government and Non-Profit programs listed above could help you find affordable housing for seniors on social security. Check out the resources above and browse our other posts for more ways to get help!