The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services lists 17 types of living arrangements available to senior citizens. Some are specifically classified as low income. In addition to help from the state of New Jersey, federal assistance for low-income housing in New Jersey is available from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Affordable or subsidized housing can be either a rental or a home available for purchase. By definition, the units must be affordable to any household with an income of 80 percent or less of the county median income. The Council on Affordable Housing can provide additional information about New Jersey affordable housing. Information can also be obtained from the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, Division of Aging and Community Services (see Resources).
Elder Cottage Housing Opportunities
Elder cottage housing opportunities provide living arrangements that allow seniors to live independently while being close to people who can assist them. Modular cottages are built on a foundation in the yard of a home. Some New Jersey communities own the units and rent them to seniors at affordable prices.
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Home sharing is an arrangement where unrelated people share parts of a home, such as the living room and kitchen, while still maintaining their own private bedroom. Some home-sharing arrangements are sponsored by nonprofit organizations, making this type of home affordable to low-income seniors.
Subsidized Apartments for the Elderly
Subsidized apartments for the elderly are located in high- and mid-rise buildings and garden apartments. Specifically built with seniors in mind, they are typically financed by nonprofit and government agencies. Renters must be at least 62 years old and meet income limitations, with the rental cost determined by the household income. Lists of senior citizen subsidized housing in each county can be obtained by contacting the New Jersey Division of Aging and Community Services (see Resources).
Congregate House Services and Assisted Living Programs
Congregate housing services is a multi-unit building designed for semi-independent to independent people and provides community facilities along with individual living accommodations. Assisted living programs offer housing and personalized services and health care based upon the residents’ needs. It is sometimes possible to find subsidized housing within these programs. Lists of senior citizen subsidized housing in each county can be obtained by contacting the New Jersey Division of Aging and Community Services (see Resources).
Federally Assisted Housing Programs – Section 8
The Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher helps low-income households obtain safe and decent housing by paying a part of the rent. New Jersey residents age 60 and older can contact the agency within their county that administers Section 8 housing for more information (see Resources).
- Apartment image by John Sandoy from Fotolia.com