Finding affordable housing can be a challenge for many families. In PEI, there are some options that may be available to you:
- Housing Co-operatives
- Seniors' Housing
- Family Housing
Housing co-operatives provide not-for-profit housing for their members. The members do not own equity in their housing. If they move, their home is returned to the co-op, to be offered to another individual or family who needs an affordable home.
Each housing co-operative is a legal association, incorporated as a co-operative. These organizations own buildings (usually apartment buildings, sometimes houses) in which housing units are leased to their resident members.
Some co-op households pay a reduced monthly rent based on their income. Government funds cover the difference between this payment and the co-op's full housing charge. Other households pay the full monthly charge based on cost.
Because co-ops charge their members only enough to cover costs, repairs, and reserves, they can offer much more affordable housing than average private sector landlords.
Co-op housing also offers security. Co-ops are controlled by their members who have a vote in decisions about their housing.
What sets co-ops apart from private rental housing, besides lower rent, is that they are democratic communities where the residents make decisions on how the co-op operates. Members, the board of directors, and staff each have responsibilities to the co-op. A person becomes a member of the co-op once:
- his or her application for membership is approved by the board; and
- he or she agrees to follow the by-laws dealing with membership.
Provincial Housing Services
The Provincial Housing Services help create more economical rental units for lower income families. These housing services manage two social housing programs:
- Seniors’ Housing Program
- Family Housing Program
The Seniors’ Housing Program provides self-contained apartment units to low and moderate income persons over 60 years of age. Seniors housing units are available in many communities across the Province.
The Family Housing Program provides rental housing to low and moderate income families. Family housing units are available in 9 municipalities across the Province.
Rent for both programs is set to 25% of total household income.