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Low Income Housing In Chicago, Illinois

Chicago Low Income HousingAs the third largest U.S. city with a population of 2,824,584, Chicago's median house price is listed at $185,000.  Many options are available in Chicago for low-income families to find affordable rental or for sale properties.  More than 37,000 Housing Choice Vouchers (HUD Section 8 Housing) provides rental property to families whose income does not exceed 80% of Chicago's area median income (AMI), depending on family size.  Under the voucher program, families pay a percentage of the monthly rent and Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) pays the rest with federal funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  Property developers who participate in offering housing under the voucher program receive free inspections and tax breaks. 

Families can also use their vouchers to purchase a home under the Choose To Own (CTO) home ownership program.  The program pays a percentage of the mortgage for 10-15 years and also gives homeowners counseling and education through the home buying process.  Available housing includes family housing, housing for the elderly, and mixed-income properties located within higher income neighborhoods.  Properties can be a mix of high-rise units and low-rise units and condos  available as public housing rentals, affordable for sale properties and properties available at market rate, all located within the same development area. 

Bank of America has implemented a new program in Cleveland and plans to implement it in Chicago and Detroit to give away abandoned homes it can't sell.  Other banks and Fannie Mae are also considering programs of their own.

Revitalized housing throughout Chicago offers a broad variety of housing styles that include rowhomes, townhomes, duplexes, flats, and condominiums.   Families moving to Chicago who have a housing voucher from another city can “port in” or transfer their voucher to Chicago.   For more details on Chicago's affordable housing options for low-income families, qualifying guidelines and photos of available housing, go to the Chicago Housing Authority web site at www.thecha.org.


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