Finding a home

Category: Tenant Rights & Laws Last Updated: Sunday, 28 September 2014 Published: Sunday, 21 September 2014 Written by ATA Admin

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Finding a home:



The first problem which every tenant faces is finding a good and adequate home. Before beginning the search, the tenant should decide what is needed, for example: the number of rooms, location or distance from public transportation and how much the tenant can afford to pay. By making some decisions first, the renter can avoid being forced into a rental situation which he or she may later regret.

Newspapers are usually the easiest place to find out where private properties are. Renters can get information about rental property from realtors or reliable rental location services. But remember that these services may often cost money. Make sure to find out what the money covers and what services will be provided before you agree to the service.


How Can I Find An Apartment or House?

Ask your friends about any “For Rent” signs in their neighborhood and check your own neighborhood for signs. Check the classified section of the local newspapers, which covers surrounding communities. The local public library has copies of the local newspapers available

Look for local apartment guides in grocery and convenience stores. The apartment guides will likely be near the community service bulletin at the front of the store.

When you find apartments or homes that you can afford, start looking at them! Keep in mind that there is no perfect unit or perfect landlord. You should make notes of the surroundings (neighborhood, parks, shopping malls, access to main roads, bus line, etc.) and the quality of the rental unit. Your notes can help you compare different apartments or homes.




Allentown Housing Authority
1339 W. Allen St., Allentown, PA 18102
Subsidized public housing (location of residence would be within the existing public housing developments) and Section 8 rental assistance (eligible individual pays a portion of income for rent and HUD-Federal Program funds the balance).


What is public housing?
Public housing was established to provide decent and safe rental housing for eligible low-income families, the elderly, and persons with disabilities. Public housing comes in all sizes and types, from scattered single family houses to high-rise apartments for elderly families. There are approximately 1.2 million households living in public housing units, managed by some 3,300 housing authorities. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) administers Federal aid to local housing agencies (HAs) that manage the housing for low-income residents at rents they can afford. HUD furnishes technical and professional assistance in planning, developing and managing these developments.

Who is eligible?
Public housing is limited to low-income families and individuals. AHA determines your eligibility based on: 1) annual gross income; 2) whether you qualify as elderly, a person with a disability, or as a family; and 3) U.S. citizenship or eligible immigration status. If you are eligible, the AHA will check your references to make sure you and your family will be good tenants. AHA will deny admission to any applicant whose habits and practices may be expected to have a detrimental effect on other tenants or on the project's environment.

Has use income limits developed by HUD. HUD sets the lower income limits at 80% and very low income limits at 50% of the median income for the county or metropolitan area in which you choose to live. Income limits vary from area to area so you may be eligible at one housing authority but not at another. The AHA can provide you with the income levels for your area and family size, or you can also find the income limits on the internet.

How do I apply?
If you are interested in applying for public housing, contact the Allentown Housing Authority. If you have trouble contacting the AHA, contact the local HUD Field Office below.


Philadelphia Regional Office
The Wanamaker Building
100 Penn Square East
Philadelphia, PA

Regional Administrator

(215) 656-0500
Fax: (215) 656-3445




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