Q & A
What is the Fresno Housing Authority?
The Fresno Housing Authority is a public agency that helps more than 16,000 low and moderate income families, including seniors and the disabled, afford safe and decent housing.
What does the Housing Authority do?
It administers diverse affordable housing and homeless programs funded by the U.S. Office of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the State of California. The agency’s mission is to build strong communities by providing quality housing and empowerment opportunities to eligible individuals and families in partnership with community resource providers.
How does the Housing Authority help Fresno residents afford decent housing?
The Housing Authority manages a variety of programs that help offset the housing costs confronted by Fresno residents with incomes substantially below the local median income. In addition to rental assistance, the Housing Authority operates programs that help qualified Fresno residents purchase a first home or repair existing homes. The Housing Authority works with nonprofit and for-profit developers to expand the supply of affordable housing and also purchases and manages numerous affordable multi-family housing developments throughout the city and county. Additionally, the Housing Authority trains residents to improve their employability through programs such as Family Self Sufficiency (FSS).
Who is in charge of the Fresno Housing Authority?
The Fresno Housing Authority is led by two Boards of Commissioners – the Board of Commissioners of the Housing Authority of the City of Fresno and the Board of Commissioners of the Housing Authority of Fresno County – each with seven members. The Executive Director of the Housing Authority, Preston Prince, reports to both boards and oversees the day-to-day operations of both agencies. Approximately 240 employees are involved in carrying out the Housing Authority’s mandates and programs.
Where does the Housing Authority get its funds?
The majority of funds come from the U.S. Office of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). HUD regulates and provides funding for most of the programs administered by the Housing Authority, including Public Housing, Housing Choice Vouchers (commonly known as Section 8), and Shelter Plus Care. The Housing Authority also generates income from its properties and can apply for a variety of grants as well as federal, state, and local funds to supplement its core funding. The Boards of Commissioners approve budget plans and oversees fiscal plans and expenditures.
What is the income level for most people receiving assistance from the Fresno Housing Authority?
Sixty-two percent (62%) of households receiving housing assistance (vouchers or apartments) fall in the very low income category – earning less than 30% of the local median income in Fresno County. (Median income in Fresno County is approximately $55,500; persons earning less than 30% of median income earn less than $12,150 per year).
How do residents get support to achieve self-sufficiency and independence?
The Housing Authority has numerous programs, (such as youth workshops and after-school activities; parenting classes; and self-esteem, stress management, job development, financial management, budgeting/credit, early home-buyer, predatory lending, and foreclosure prevention workshops) that assist families to improve their economic and educational status.
For more information: (559) 445-8956
Where are the Fresno Housing Authority housing complexes located?
The Housing Authority owns and manages dozens of properties throughout the city of Fresno and also in Fresno County.
How does the Housing Authority help low- and moderate-income families pay their rent?
The Housing Authority provides Housing Choice Vouchers which pay part of a family’s rent and ensure that low- and moderate-income families don’t pay an excessive portion of their income for housing. The Housing Authority also has programs specifically designed to address the needs of particular populations such as farmworkers, the homeless, and residents with physical and/or mental challenges.
How much of a renter’s housing costs does the Housing Authority cover?
The amount of subsidy a family receives from the Housing Authority depends largely on the size and income of the family. In the Housing Choice Voucher program (formerly known as Section 8), participants pay approximately 30 to 40% of their adjusted gross income in rent directly to the property owner. The balance of the rent amount is paid by the Housing Authority.
How does someone apply for a Housing Choice Voucher or for an apartment in a Housing Authority-owned building?
There is currently a waiting list for Housing Authority-owned apartments and for the Housing Choice Vouchers program. For information about applying for the Wait List for Housing Authority-owned apartments, call (559) 445-8956; for information about the Housing Choice Voucher program, call (559) 266-9941.
Do some people get priority over other families waiting for apartments?
The Housing Authority gives preference to the elderly, the disabled, veterans, and local residents, as well as those with special situations.
Must people live in a public housing apartment to receive help from the Housing Authority?
No. While the Housing Authority owns and manages public housing complexes throughout Fresno County, the majority of residents helped by the Housing Authority are assisted through the Housing Choice Voucher program and can choose from a range of privately-owned housing throughout the county.
Do residents of Housing Authority-owned apartments and Housing Choice Voucher holders have to be U.S. citizens?
No. Non-citizens can live in Housing Authority-owned apartments and can also live with family members who have Housing Choice Vouchers. At least one member of the household must be a U.S. citizen. (Rental assistance amounts, however, reflect the number of U.S. citizens in the household.)
Does the Housing Authority provide special support for farmworkers?
Yes. The Housing Authority owns farm labor housing complexes in Orange Cove, Mendota, Parlier, and Fresno. Legal residents who derive at least half of their income from farm-related sources are eligible for housing assistance in these complexes. This program is supported by grants from the Rural Development Division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The Housing Authority also manages two migrant farmworker complexes, supported by grants from the State of California’s Office of Migrant Services – one in Firebaugh and one in Parlier. These complexes are occupied from April through October and can be rented by farmworkers who are legal residents with a permanent home at least 50 miles away from the complex.