How to better your chances of getting into affordable housing

Posted at 2:58 AM, Jun 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-22 06:43:31-04

Local housing authorities can't build affordable homes fast enough, so private investors are stepping and folks in need are reaping the benefits. This is what you need to know to get in a place quicker.

Aida Palms in Lakeland is brand new and already filled up.

Spring Waterloo is single, has no children and is grateful she got in.

"There’s plenty of nights I went hungry you know, cause I didn’t have it," said Waterloo.

Aida Palms, developed by a private company, is giving 96 families a place to rest their head, and taking the burden off local housing authorities.

“For every 10 families that needs affordable housing, there is only three housing units available," said Benjamin Stevenson, who works for the Lakeland Housing Authority.

Stevenson says there is not enough federal tax dollars to build homes for everyone in need.

"Last year, we opened up an application for a waiting list. I think we only did it for a two days and we had 2000 applications," said Stevenson.

Some families get priority over others, like a single mom with six kids versus someone without children.
So how can you better your chances?

Be as detailed as possible when applying. Include if you are veteran, if you have a job or kid.

Know where you stand on the wait list and when the Housing Authority opens it for applications. 

Be honest on your application. Having a criminal background may not be a deal breaker. If you provide false information, it is a crime.

The grand opening of Aida Palms is Thursday morning. It is a chance for thepeople living here to meet the investors and developers that made it happen.