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Reaching the top of the waiting list depends on a variety of things, including the “selection preferences” that you indicate on your application. “Selection preferences” are special circumstances that may help move your name higher on the waiting list (although these won’t guarantee that you will be offered housing assistance). Selection preferences available include:

No fixed address: This means you are homeless and have no regular or adequate night-time residence; or live in a publicly or privately run shelter, temporary residence in an institution, or in a public or private place that isn’t ordinarily used for sleeping.

Living in a unit that is considered substandard: This means you are living in a property that contains one or more Housing Quality Standards or Code Violations at the time “selection preference” is verified by DCHA. The violations must have been certified by an inspector of the District of Columbia (or other jurisdiction).

You have been involuntarily displaced: This means you have had to leave your home through no fault of your own. This could be as a result of a disaster, such as a fire or flood; because of a federal, state or local government action; as a result of action by a housing owner which is beyond your control; or because of domestic violence or hate crimes.

Inaccessibility of Unit: If you can’t use your current housing because you or a member of your household has some type of disability, your application will be given preference.

Rent Burden: This means you are paying more than 50 percent of your total household income toward rent and utilities.

Some “selection preferences” apply to Public Housing only:

Working family: Preference is given if the head of the household, spouse or sole member of the household is employed at least 20 hours a week, self-employed, attending school full time, attending a program for a General Equivalency Diploma (GED), is participating in job training, or is elderly or disabled.

The Elderly: Preference is given in a family in which the head of the household, spouse, or sole member is 62 years of age or older.

The Near Elderly: Preference is given to a family whose head of household, spouse, or sole member is at least 50 years of age, but less than 62 years of age.

The Disabled: A family whose head of household, spouse or sole member has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life functions is given preference.

Last modified: 8/20/2010 8:54:18 AM