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  • What is HUD Section 8 Rental Housing Assistance?
  • How does one qualify for Section 8 Rental Housing Assistance?
  • What is the Santa Rosa Housing Trust?
  • I heard that the City can help me repair my home. Do you have any money for that?
  • Is there any money available to help me develop new housing?
  • What does affordable housing mean?
  • Does the City help with homelessness and special needs housing?
  • Current and Major Housing Issues
  • The Future...Challenges and Opportunities
  • What does the Housing Authority do?

 What is HUD Section 8 Rental Housing Assistance?

The Section 8 Rental Assistance Program was enacted as part of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974. The Act provides funding to local jurisdictions to sponsor a free choice approach to assisted housing. There is no publicly owned housing in Santa Rosa. Rather, property owners retain property rights and tenants pay a portion of the rent to the landlord. The Housing Authority pays the rent difference directly to the property owner. These rental assistance payments help approximately 1,600 households in Santa Rosa live in decent, safe and sanitary housing while providing $13 million annually of federal funds to the local economy.

How does one qualify for Section 8 Rental Housing Assistance?

To qualify, a household must have an annual income of less than 50% of the median income for Santa Rosa, adjusted for the size of the household. The Department maintains a waiting list of households that would like to obtain this rental assistance. The waiting list is closed until approximately May of 2018. The majority of clients is elderly, single parent families, and people with disabilities.

What is the Santa Rosa Housing Trust?

The Trust is a mechanism by which affordable housing revenue is passed through a Trustee (Housing Authority) for the housing benefit of very low and low-income beneficiaries. Revenue comes from a variety of sources including the federal Community Development Block Grant and HOME Program, and local sources such as the City's General Fund, and loan repayments. These resources are used for Housing Production, Housing Conversion & Preservation, Special Needs Facilities, and Homebuyer Programs.

Is there any money available to help me develop new housing?

In the Trust category of Production, the Department of Housing & Community Services provides funds to assist the development of new housing that is affordable to households earning less than 30-80% of the median income. Rents must be restricted to affordable levels for at least 55 years. Most of the funds are provided as low interest loans to non-profit developers of affordable rental housing.

What does affordable housing mean?

HUD guidelines state that housing is affordable to a household if they do not pay more than 30% of their monthly income, adjusted for family size, toward the rent or mortgage payment, plus basic utilities.

Does the City help with homelessness and special needs housing?

Yes. The Department manages local and federal monies that support homeless shelters, transitional housing, housing designed for persons with disabilities, and a host of related services. Examples include the 40-bed Brookwood Center Homeless Shelter, opened in April 2002, and the 80-bed homeless shelter within the multi-purpose Samuel Jones Hall in southwest Santa Rosa, opened in November 2005.

For more information please visit our homeless services page.

Current and Major Housing Issues

  • Demand for housing, particularly rental housing affordable to very low income families
  • Demand for rental subsidy for very low and extremely low income families and individuals
  • Low vacancy rates in the rental housing market available to all income levels.

The Future...Challenges and Opportunities

  • Communicating the many successful results in the provision of affordable housing and the efforts to remove blight throughout the City
  • Expanding neighborhood revitalization efforts
  • Promoting the production of a variety of housing types, such as assisted living for seniors  
  • Pursuing new and diverse financial resources
  • Identifying City land use policies that provide effective incentives for the development of housing that is affordable and appropriate for the community

What does the Housing Authority do?

Primarily, the Housing Authority oversees Federal and local funding that promote affordable housing opportunity like HUD Section 8 Rental Assistance, Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) and HOME Programs.