Housing Authorities in Puerto Rico

State of Housing in Puerto RicoPuerto Rico received $8,026,703 in a second round of grants in 2013 to support 42 local homeless housing and service programs in Puerto Rico.Public housing in Puerto Rico is a subsidized system of housing units, mostly consisting of housing projects (Residenciales, Barriadas, or CaseriosPublicos), which are provided for low-income families in Puerto Rico. The system is mainly financed with programs from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). There are 322 public housing developments in Puerto Rico.

In 1992, “manodura contra el crimen” (hard hand against crime), a policy that targeted public housing sites as the place of intervention in the fight against crime in Puerto Rico, was launched. The manodura policies included a number of interventions—building gates to control access, installing policemen, renovating housing projects, initiating social program, privatizing the management of housing projects, and building recreation programs and centersintended to benefit public housing residents, in particular, and improve the quality of residential life for all Puerto Ricans.

Public Housing in Puerto Rico

Public housing is an affordable rental-housing program for eligible low-income families, the elderly, and persons with disabilities. Public housing comes in all sizes and types, from efficiencies to five-bedroom homes and one-bedroom units for the elderly.


All sources of money you and any member of your family receive (wages, welfare payments, alimony, social security,State of Housing in Puerto Rico pension, etc.);Any money you receive on behalf of children (child support, social security for children, etc.), Income from assets (interest from a savings account, credit union, or certificate of deposit; dividends from stocks, etc.);Earnings from a second job or part time job; Any anticipated income (such as a bonus or pay raise you expect to receive.

All bank accounts, savings bonds certificates of deposit, stocks, real estate, etc., that are owned by you and any adult member of your family/household who will be living with you.Any business or assets you sold in the last 2 years for less than its full value, such as your home to your children.

Family/Household Members

  • Birth Certificates and social security cards of all members who will be residing in the household.
  • Name/address of present landlord and rent receipts for the past six (6) months.
  • Name/address and telephone number of three (3) relatives or friends to notify in case of emergency.
  • If the applicant does not meet the Tenant Selection Screening Criteria, he/she will be denied housing and notified in writing of such decision.


Once an applicant meets all criteria for admission, he/she will be notified of the community assignment, monthly rent, and the required amount of monies needed before admission to include the security deposit.If any applicant chooses to reject the unit offered, the applicant's name will be removed from the waiting list, or if non-responsive to the unit offer, the application will be withdrawn.

Signing the Application
Do not sign any form unless you have read it, understand it, and are sure everything is complete and accurate.When you sign an application and certification form, you are claiming that they are complete to the best of your knowledge and belief. You are committing fraud if you sign any form knowing that it contains false or misleading information. The information you give on your application will be verified by your housing agency. In addition, the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) may do computer matches of the income you report with various Federal, State or private agencies to verify if it is correct.

Specialized Housing
The Authority has modernized a considerable number of its housing stock, making the units accessible to the sight, hearing impaired and physically challenged tenants. Housing community offices, community recreation centers and our Central Office facility locations are also accessible to the disabled. Amenities include grab bars, wider doorways, ramps, lowered appliances, textured sidewalk strips for the sight impaired, doorbell lights for the hearing impaired and more.

Penalties for Committing Fraud
The United States Development of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) places a high priority on preventing fraud. If your application or recertification forms contain false or incomplete information, you may be:

  • Evicted from your apartment or house required to repay all overpaid rental assistance you received;
  • Fined up to $10,000;
  • Imprisoned for up to 5 years and/or
  • Prohibited from receiving full assistance.

Your state and local government may have other laws and penalties as well. You should be aware of the following fraud schemes:

  • Do not pay any money to file an application.
  • Do not pay any money to move up on the waiting list.
  • Do not pay anything not covered by your lease.
  • Get a receipt for any money you pay.

Get a written explanation if you are required to pay any money other than rent If you are aware of anyone who hasState of Housing in Puerto Rico falsified an application, or if anyone tries to persuade you to make false statements, report them to the Housing Manager of your community or contact the HUD Hotline at (202) 472-4200. You may also write to HUD Hotline, Room 8254, 451 Seventh Street, S.W. Washington, D.C. 20410.


Income limits for public housing and vouchers are set by the government. They change every year and are different in different parts of the state and for different sized families.

Income Limits for Housing Subsidy in Puerto Rico

San Juan Municipio, Puerto Rico
Income Limit Information1 Person2 Person3 Person4 Person5 Person6 Person7 Person8 Person
Very Low (50%) Income Limits $11,900 $13,600 $15,300 $16,950 $18,350 $19,700 $21,050 $22,400
Extremely Low (30%) Income Limits $7,150 $8,150 $9,150 $10,150 $11,000 $11,800 $12,600 $13,400
Low (80%) Income Limits $19,000 $21,700 $24,400 $27,100 $29,300 $31,450 $33,650 $35,800

Applicants for public housing, rent subsidy, or other housing assistance must also pass a criminal background check. They may be given priority status if they are:

  • Persons who are homeless due to natural disasters.
  • Persons who are homeless due to public action.
  • Persons with emergency needs (such as domestic violence victims, persons with medical emergencies, or homeless persons facing an immediate threat to their health and safety.
  • Veterans and local residents.

Unemployment Rate in Puerto Rico

2013 Jan 1205427 1028847 176580 14.6
2013 Feb 1202551 1028007 174544 14.5
2013 Mar 1194977 1025757 169220 14.2
2013 Apr 1185010 1023156 161854 13.7
Y : Reflects new population controls and revised seasonal adjustment.

The demand for housing and rent subsidy programs in Puerto Rico far exceeds the available supply of funds. Please ask your housing agency for details of the programs you are interested in.