Housing Assistance in Hawaii

Last Updated on December 20, 2022 by Meghan

The state of Hawaii is an international tourist attraction and its earnings from tourism contribute to a good portion of the country’s GDP. In spite of this, single mothers in Hawaii still find it challenging to find decent and affordable housing for themselves and their little ones. To lift some weight off their shoulders, we’ve compiled this article on housing assistance programs and resources in Hawaii.


State of Hawaii Public Housing

Thousands of residents in the state, including the elderly and single mothers are either homeless or at risk of being homeless in the near foreseeable future. In an effort to reduce homelessness the Hawaiian state government runs a public housing scheme and its name suggests, it makes public housing available to the struggling population. In order to be considered, candidates have to send in applications either as hard copies or by email. It’s worth noting that the public housing scheme has strict rules that successful candidates have to follow. Find out everything you need to know here: http://www.hpha.hawaii.gov/

State of Hawaii Rental Supplement Program

It’s one thing to find a home to rent, but keeping up with the monthly rent payment is a completely different concept. As a matter of fact, a very high percentage of the Hawaiian population has a hard time staying on top of rent payment. Consequently, the state of Hawaii Rental Supplement program lends a hand to these individuals and families. How it works is that qualified residents are expected to pay a maximum of 30% of their monthly salary and the project will pay the rest. The following are qualifying criteria for the program:

  • Size of the house must be adapted to the family’s size
  • You must not be receiving any financial assistance from the government of Hawaii
  • Provide proof that you can pay a portion of your rent
  • Your income should not be higher than that stipulated on the website

There are more criteria to take into consideration. Find out what they are at: http://www.hpha.hawaii.gov/faqs/publichousing.html

Helping Hands Emergency Assistance Program

As a single mother or an individual having a hard time staying afloat, finding help in a short period of time may seem daunting or utterly impossible. However the Helping Hands foundation, funded federally, launched an emergency program to prevent homelessness or help those who are already homeless. Successful residents will receive help in the form of rent assistance and temporary emergency housing. It’s worth noting that if you apply, you’ll be asked to complete a pre-assessment questionnaire. In addition to that, you also need to take eligible factors and supporting documents into consideration. Find out more at: https://helpinghandshawaii.org/programs/emergency-assistance-program/emergency-assistance-program-covid-19-recovery-fund/

National Low Income Coalition

Hawaii, just like many other states, doesn’t provide enough affordable housing for rent or to purchase by the extremely low income population. People who fall under that category typically earn less than 30% of the average salary of the area. They provide various types of assistance not just in the state but across the entire country. Find out if you’re eligible here: https://nlihc.org/

Legal Aid Society of Hawaii

Facing eviction is a traumatizing experience and not having the means or expertise to deal with makes it more of a nightmare. The average citizen doesn’t understand everything to do with legal matters, so having an attorney or paralegal on hand is absolutely necessary. That’s where the Legal Aid Society of Hawaii comes in. They provide legal support to the struggling population, so as to help them prevent or delay eviction for as long as they can or until they’re able to find an alternative home. Get in contact at:https://www.legalaidhawaii.org/

Catholic Charities Hawaii Rent Relief Program

The Catholic Charities Hawaii Rent Relief program is administered by the catholic charities but federally funded by the state department of commerce and consumer affairs. Its objective is to primarily assist residents who have lost employment or have suffered a reduction of salary because of the pandemic. Single mothers and other candidates will continue to enjoy the benefits well after the pandemic, because it’s a permanent project. You can apply directly online, by completing a printed form or emailing a scanned form. However, before you apply, you should consider the requirements to be eligible: https://www.catholiccharitieshawaii.org/housinghelp/

State Homeless Emergency Grants Program

The State Homeless Emergency Grants Program weighs in on the fight against homelessness by helping sheltered or unsheltered homeless people find temporary or permanent homes. It doesn’t stop there though, beyond that, the project trains people to fend for themselves and they avail other benefits like medical care, rent assistance and subsidized emergency medical assistance. Read more at https://www.benefits.gov/benefit/5890

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program

Keeping your home sufficiently equipped to adapt to different weather conditions is costly, and for people who are earning less than the average salary, it’s close to impossible. The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program rectifies this issue by ultimately helping the low income population pay their energy bills by means of a once off yearly payment. Find out more about them at https://healthandwelfare.idaho.gov/services-programs/financial-assistance/home-heatingutility-assistance

Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program

The Section 8 Housing Choice Program is a federally funded project to supply rent assistance to low income population. How it works is that participants pick their own units and from there they agree to pay 30% of their rent and the section 8 voucher pays the remaining portion. There are requirements, eligibility qualifiers, restrictions, common disqualifiers, restrictions and preferences that you need to be aware of before applying. Get more information on all that here:https://www.idahohousing.com/rental-assistance/housing-choice-voucher/

Hawaii Public Housing Authority

A good portion of the struggling population is still unable to find decent homes not because of common factors like genuine shortage but because of discrimination in the public and private housing sector. The role of the public housing authority is to ensure that everyone who is need is treated fairly and is provided with all the assistance they need and deserve, in terms of rent and affordable homes. Get more information here: http://www.hpha.hawaii.gov/

If you are living in Hawaii, You may like to check these resources too:
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