Low Income Senior Living Guide

Senior living facilities are those that are geared toward Americans older than 55 years of age. Some communities consist of condos and townhomes while others are made up of apartment complexes. No matter the type, finding a living facility that fits your budget can be a bit tricky.

Low income senior living facilities help seniors living on a fixed income find safe and comfortable residences while also receiving the care they need. Most facilities offer medical services as needed to help residents lead an active and healthy lifestyle. 

From senior apartments to retirement communities, there is a lot of misconception regarding the total cost of these living situations. There are several government programs available to help seniors find affordable housing, lower their rent or mortgage payments and get access to important medical services. Learn how to find low income housing for seniors by reading the topics discussed below.

What is a Senior Living Facility?

Low income senior living facilities come in all shapes and sizes. However, these communities are generally restricted to those age 55 or older and frequently offer optional medical services and health care to those who need it. There are three main types of living facilities:

A retired community is one of the most loosely structured senior facilities out there. In its most basic option, these communities are made up of homeowners who are at least 55 years of age or older. Most communities consist of separate houses, townhomes or condominiums. Most retirement communities do not offer health care services. 

An assisted living facility typically consists of senior apartments connected through hallways in a health care setting. Most seniors have their own private quarters, though having a suitemate or roommate is not uncommon. These living facilities are geared toward those who need help with everyday tasks, like dressing, cooking or cleaning. 

Lastly, senior communities are not the only options for those on a fixed income. Many government programs are available for seniors on a fixed income looking for rental or mortgage assistance. These programs help seniors stay in their homes or find a new one that fits into their budgets. 

Low Income Senior Living Assistance Programs

Senior living assistance programs are designed to help older Americans with the cost of assisted and independent living. Many programs recognize the need for basic assistance with daily tasks, such as bathing, cleaning or dressing, and provide these services to seniors for less. 

For example, the Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly serves low-income seniors across the country. This program is reserved for Americans age 62 and older with very low household income, generally 50 percent of the area median.

The Section 202 Program typically offers one-bedroom apartments equipped with senior-specific special features, like wide hallways, ramps and stability bars. Some low income senior living facilities offered through this program provide transportation to doctor appointments, meal preparation and basic housekeeping.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, or LIHTC. Many senior apartments and communities operate under this program to provide low-income seniors with affordable housing. Through this program, seniors can rent housing for much less than the average market rates. 

How to Find Low Income Senior Living Facilities 

Finding a senior living facility is one thing, but finding the right one is very important. The senior population is a vulnerable population, and it is important to ensure you are following legitimate housing leads to avoid falling victim to a scam. 

Low income senior living options are out there. First, narrow down your budget to come up with a monthly rent estimate. This will help filter out housing opportunities that are outside of your means. Consider the normal market rates in your area, then determine if this is a reasonable monthly expense. If not, consider applying for assistance programs.  

Consider your needs. Do you require living assistance? Do you want 24/7 healthcare in your place of residence? This will help you find the most appropriate living facilities during your search. If you are simply looking for an affordable house, townhome, condo or apartment, you can do a senior-specific online search to find housing that fits your needs.