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Can I afford to live on my own?

How to pay for housing is probably your most important consideration.  You will need to be able to afford rent (and usually, additional utilities such as heat, water and electricity) which could be paid for with wages you earn or with government benefits for which you qualify (like Social Security).  Many people also rely on their families to help them pay for things they need to live on their own.

Subsidized housing, which is housing made available at a lower cost, is available for people who qualify. The qualifying income level is determined each year by the government (check the link below, for current requirements and agencies that can identify available subsidized housing.)

Some housing is specifically set aside for people with disabilities or low income.  This is called Section 8 housing. Usually, there is a large apartment complex with many apartments available to those who qualify.  If you meet the requirements, you can apply to live there, but there is usually a long waiting list because there are so many people looking for affordable housing.


There are also housing vouchers available that allow you to find your own housing, but the government helps pay for it through reduced rents.  This gives you more flexibility on where you can live, but it also requires a long wait to qualify and receive a voucher.

If you need financial help to afford a place to live on your own, it is a good idea to get yourself on the waiting lists early.  It can take a long time before you are able to move into a subsidized apartment or receive a Section 8 housing voucher.


(Clicking on one of the links below will take you away from

Lansing Housing Commission (  The Lansing Housing Commission (LHC) is a Public Housing Agency (PHA) that provides rental housing units and rental assistance to families.

Subsidized Independent Living Options (  Learn about government programs that help low-income people find affordable rental housing. Each of the programs - subsidized housing, public housing, and housing choice vouchers - is different. Get the details on how they work, who is eligible, and how to apply.

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