Can I Rent Out a Room in My Home to My Mother as a Section 8 Tenant?

 In Real Estate
section 8

Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash

Question:

My mom lives in an apartment in Escondido, California. She has been on HUD for many years. She is 89 and I want her to move in with me so I can take care of her. I would have to evict a current tenant renting a room in the home I own. Can I receive HUD help because I need more money than she is currently paying because she has HUD. I am a homeowner in Poway. I cannot get a return phone call from HUD regarding moving her in here with their assistance transferred. Can you give me any advice? I cannot afford to only accept what she is currently paying and my mom should not be living alone any longer.

Response:

I assume your mother is receiving Section 8 assistance. Under its rules, you cannot rent from a relative. However, there are some exceptions for people who are disabled, for which your mother may qualify.

In terms of getting some answers, I would not go directly to HUD, which is a federal agency. Even though Section 8 is a HUD program, it’s administered by the local housing authorities. In fact, different local housing agencies have been known to interpret the federal rules differently. I’d recommend contacting the housing authorities for both Escondido and Poway to see what they day and how it would work for your mother to move from one town to another, whether she can simply transfer her Section 8 certificate.

You might also want to contact the Council on Aging for Poway to see if there are other programs that might assist you and your mother. I practice in Massachusetts where our MassHealth program (MediCal in California) offers what’s called Group Adult Foster Care which can pay a stipend to a family member who lives with a senior who needs assistance. You may have this or another program available in California.

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