You are here

Eligibility - SHA Housing

Eligibility - SHA Housing

Eligibility for SHA housing is based on income, age and/or disability, citizenship and immigration status and general tenant screening criteria.

Please read the eligibility information carefully because requirements are different for each program.

Low-Income Public Housing
  • Applicants earning 30% or less of Area Median Income (AMI) or who are homeless receive priority on the waitlist, but households earning 80% or less of AMI are eligible to apply.AMI is the midpoint income for the Seattle area. It is determined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and means that half of the people earn more than the median, and half of the people earn less.

Because SHA primarily serves people at or below 30% of Area Median Income (AMI), availability for households at income levels above that is extremely limited.

  • Some LIPH properites have units that are student restricted. If you have full-time students in your household, you may not be eligible for some units.

Rent: Typically residents pay 30 percent of the total household’s monthly adjusted income for rent and utilities.

Seattle Senior Housing
  • People must be 62 years or older, or a disabled adult, and have no more than four people in the household to live in SSHP housing. (Please note: At the current time there is no availability in SSHP based only on disability if under age 62.)
  • No member of the household may be under 18 years of age 
  • Applicants already living in Seattle receive priority on the waitlist. 
  • Seniors may apply to SSHP in addition to SHA’s other housing programs.
  • The total household annual income must be a minimum of $8,820 and a maximum of 80% of Area median Income (AMI).

Rent: Residents are charged one of several rent levels, depending on income, the number of people in the household, and the number of bedrooms. See rent schedule 

Additional housing

Throughout its properties, SHA also has a limited number of units that differ in eligibility, rent and application process than the two main programs above, and may also vary from property to property.  Here are descriptions of the two additional programs. 

Special Portfolio - Income eligibility limits vary by property. Tenants typically pay 30% of income for rent, but some may pay market rate.

Tax Credit  - Income limits vary by property. Rent is not subsidized and tenants typically pay market rate. There is no eligibility criteria around citizenship for this type of housing.


Screening criteria

Like most landlords, SHA screens rental applicants. 

  • To be considered suitable, you must be able to pay rent when due, take care of the unit, and live peacefully with your neighbors. 
  • SHA investigates housing history, credit history, employment and criminal history.

Citizenship and immigration status

  • For SHA’s Low-Income Public Housing or Seattle Senior Housing Program, you do not need to be a U.S. citizen at the time of application. However, at the time of move-in at least one household member must either be a U.S. citizen or have eligible immigration status. Full assistance is provided to households where every member has eligible citizenship status. Pro-rated assistance is provided to households with at least one eligible member.
  • Your immigration eligibility will be verified after you are contacted about a vacancy. Learn more about how citizenship and immigration status affects assistance. 
  • Citizenship and immigration status requirements vary in the Special Portfolio and Tax Credit programs 

Questions? Contact us