You've served your country and are now struggling to find affordable housing or at risk of homelessness? The path from military to civilian is challenging, especially in today's competitive housing market. Luckily though, there are programs available specifically for veterans and their families.
This guide will help you understand VA benefits to help you find resources and a suitable housing situation for retired service members. VA loans, the national call center, the homeless veterans hotline, and nonprofit organizations are all excellent support services. The search starts here!
Veterans' Affairs (VA) Housing Resources
To start -- the VA home loan benefit center offers several housing programs to provide veterans. The VA home loan guarantee program allows you to get a mortgage with no down payment. They guarantee a part of your loan so you can qualify for a mortgage at a very competitive interest rate. To apply, you need a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) to prove your veteran status. Apply on the VA website or by mail!
They also provide grants for disabled veterans. The Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) and the Special Housing Adaptation (SHA) grant offers to help adapt your home for your needs. For veterans, the VA's Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program provides temporary rental assistance. The VA works with non-profits to provide transitional housing and permanent housing.
Section 8 Housing Vouchers
The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers housing vouchers using the Section 8 program to help veterans pay for housing. If you're a struggling veteran, this program could be a lifesaver.
How the Program Works
Section 8 vouchers provides eligible veterans a subsidy that covers part of your rent each month. You only pay 30-40% of your income toward rent and utilities. Vouchers are distributed through local Public Housing Authorities (PHAs). The voucher allows you to choose your own housing from rentals on the open market. You're not limited to subsidized housing projects. You can rent anywhere in the PHA's service area. If you want to move to a new area, the voucher could be portable to that area's PHA.
The PHA will inspect the unit to ensure it meets health and safety standards before you move in. The owner must also agree to accept the voucher.
Most low income veterans qualify for Section 8 vouchers. The PHA will check your income to ensure you meet the limits for your area. As long as you're within the income caps, have received an honorable discharge from the military, and are a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen, you should definitely qualify.
Section 202 Housing For Elderly Veterans
In the market for affordable elderly living? The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) also offers housing help for elderly veterans or individuals with the Section 202 program.
To be eligible for Section 202 housing, you must:
- Be at least 62 years of age or older.
- Meet income requirements set by HUD. Generally, this means having an income at or below 50% of your area's median income.
Applying For Section 202
Contact properties in your area that were developed under the Section 202 program. These properties will have long-term use restrictions to serve elder, very low income veterans. Ask if they have vacancies or if they maintain a waiting list for potential tenants. There is no nationwide application for Section 202 housing. The sooner you apply the better.
SNAP Program: Food Support For Veterans
Once you have housing covered, what about food assistance? The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides food support for veterans and their families. SNAP benefits can help supplement a veteran’s food budget to purchase healthy and nutritious food.
To qualify for SNAP as a veteran, you must meet certain income requirements based on your household size. Veterans receiving VA disability compensation, pension, or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits may be eligible for SNAP. You can apply for SNAP benefits through your local SNAP office or Social Services agency.
SNAP benefits cannot be used for:
- Alcoholic beverages and tobacco products
- Most restaurants
EASY Wireless' FREE PHONE Program For veterans!
Hopefully after reading this blog, you find a way out of your situation. But once you have housing covered -- what about receiving other benefits as a veteran? EASY Wireless offers a FREE phone program for veterans and their families. You can receive a free smartphone with monthly phone service.
With EASY Wireless, you’ll enjoy nationwide coverage, clear reception, and strong data signals. You can keep your current phone number or get another one. Either way, you’ll have reliable cell service to count on in an emergency or just to stay connected. Here's how to apply:
Lifeline & ACP Programs with EASY Wireless
Lifeline and the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) are government programs designed to make phone and internet services more affordable for eligible low-income individuals and families.
Here at EASY Wireless, we understand the importance of affordable connectivity for everyone, and we want to help you access the benefits of these programs so you can always stay connected to your friends & family, even when on a budget. Here's what you receive with us:
What Benefits do I Receive With EASY Wireless?
Upon qualifying for the programs above, here’re the connectivity benefits you receive:
EASY Wireless Unlimited Plan
- FREE Unlimited Data
- FREE Unlimited Talk
- FREE Unlimited Text
- FREE SIM Car Kit and Activation
- Choose to Keep Your Number or Get a New One
How do I Apply For my FREE PHONE With EASY Wireless?
To get started with EASY Wireless, apply online by clicking the below:
Start Saving Today!
Or you can come to one of the EASY Wireless's retail stores, where our customer service agent will help you apply for the benefits.
Either way, the first step is to provide proof of identity with a government-issued ID. This is so you can confirm your participation in one of the qualifying programs or that you meet the income requirement.
We accept the following U.S. Government Issued ID:
- U.S. Driver License
- Certificate of U.S. Citizenship
- Certificate of Naturalization
- U.S. Passport
- U.S. Government, State or Tribal issued-ID
- U.S. Military ID cards
- Permanent Resident Cards
- Permanent Resident Alien Cards
You can show the following documents to prove that you are taking part in a government assistance program or use them as proof of active benefits:
- Statement of benefits from a food distribution program.
- Federal Public Housing Assistance Vouchers Documents
- Indian Affairs general assistance documents
- Notice letter of participation, such as an award letter
- Participation documents from a program, such as a screenshot from an online account.
- In order to show income, you can provide any of the following proofs:
- Unemployment Documentation
- Copy of your State or Federal income tax return.
- Three months' worth of current pay stubs.
- Veterans Administration or Supplemental Security Income benefits letter.
- A divorce decree or child support document that states income.
- Retirement or pension statement.
Need Multiple Lines of Service or an Additional Phone?
EASY Wireless is a full-service cellular store that cares about all of your communication needs. We have everything from basic prepaid phone plans to unlimited mobile hotspot data plans for every budget and usage requirement. Also, we offer a selection of brand-name phones that combine quality, reliability, and the latest technology.
That's not all – we also provide an array of amazing accessories to enhance your mobile experience. At EASY Wireless, we're dedicated to providing exceptional service and ensuring you find the perfect plan, compatible phone, and accessories to suit your lifestyle and preferences.
Visit us for all your cell phone and wireless service needs today!