How I Got Affordable Housing When the Wait Lists Were Closed

Art: Robin Mead

Karen was told the wait lists for Section 8 had been closed for seven years. Here’s how she got an affordable place she loves in just a few months.

2018: Karen Hunts for Housing

I’m trying to learn how I go about getting help with affordable housing for myself. I am disabled due to a stroke and am on Social Security Disability.

I’ve been renting a bedroom since 2005, but now the homeowner has decided to sell the house. I’ve been looking at apartments but I can’t get approved because of my low income.

I checked the local Housing Authority in Texas where I live and Section 8 Housing Vouchers aren’t taking any new applications for at least 7 years.

I joined the Disability Self-Advocacy HUD Facebook group and people there told me to look into low income buildings instead.

2020: Karen, did you find a place to live? How did it go? 

Yes. I’m now living in a HUD apartment complex in Fort Worth, Texas. The apartment is funded, so I don’t need a voucher.

Are you happy where you are living?

I love it here and just renewed my lease for another year.

The apartments are well maintained and kept up and are inspected by HUD once a year. Thanks for asking!

How Long Was the Wait Time to Get In? 

I researched low income apartments in Fort Worth and started calling. I followed the advice of people in the group and just got on the phone and started calling everywhere.

The first good place I found was an affordable VOA apartment. It was a one bedroom apartment in a duplex for people with disabilities, and it had a fenced backyard and a garage. I decided not to rent it because it was too far from my parents.

The next good place was the place I am in now. They had one efficiency studio apartment that was going to be available in a month. I went and looked at one of the apartments and liked it, so I put a deposit down to hold the apartment and moved in January 2019.

Is Your Building Quiet?

It’s quiet here. During the summer people get out and go to the pool so you can hear the kids playing but that’s about it. It’s not the greatest area, but I feel safe here and there’s a 24 hours security guard who walks around at night just to make sure everything is OK.

I also just adopted a cat as an Emotional Support Animal and they allowed that.

Find Affordable Buildings in Your Area

7 thoughts on “How I Got Affordable Housing When the Wait Lists Were Closed”

  1. Everyone on here are talking about apartments is there a way to do this 30% funding program for a town home because I have a family of six


  2. Yes, various pages on this website have a tremendous amount of helpful information. It came in very handy as I was applying for disability. If there is any chance someone will be applying they should definitely read.


  3. I love this picture (bird). Been trying to think of something to try. This may be it. Such beautiful colors.


  4. A LOT of useful information on this website. I look here when I am trying to figure out disability, housing, health services, paying for medications and a lot more!


  5. I’m 52 years old and have never had to look for low income housing until now. As you know, many landlords/apartment complexes require you to make three times the monthly rent to qualify. For those able to work in my part of the country, this would not be an issue because incomes are very good here. For me on SSDI since 2014 with no way to even work part-time, it’s next to impossible to find a place to rent that’s even half way decent. Thanks for providing this helpful information!


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