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Application Period for Santa Monica Housing Programs Opens May 1

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By Lookout Staff

April 21, 2020 -- Santa Monica will begin accepting applications for its Section 8 and Below Market Housing (BMH) programs on Friday, May 1, 2020 at 8 a.m., housing officials announced last week.

The programs offer an opportunity for Santa Monica residents and workers "struggling with unemployment and the economic impacts of the novel coronavirus" to move into affordable units, officials said.

"You do not have to be experiencing a financial hardship as a result of COVID-19 to apply, but the City’s Housing Division recognizes that this comes at a particularly important moment as more and more people are vulnerable to economic hardship," housing officials said.

The Section 8 program provides rental subsidies to low-income families to help pay rent.

Those with income levels as high as $94,700 for single households and higher for bigger families qualify for the Below Market Housing programs, officials said.

“While we are in a public health emergency like nothing we’ve seen, we are still in a deep housing and affordability crisis that is only compounded by the pandemic,” said Housing Manager Barbara Collins.

“We hope the many people who need housing take advantage of the waitlist opening, now more than ever."

Unlike previous application periods, this one "is a rolling process, so there’s no cut off on applying," Collins said.

Applications will be available in English and Spanish and will only be accepted online at

Though applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis, documents to support income and city priorities will need to be downloaded with the application, officials said.

The Housing Division is available to help walk applicants through the process, particularly those who require reasonable accommodation or language assistance.

To get support, leave a message at (310) 458-2232 after the applications open May 1.

"If you know someone who could take advantage of the program, but does not have access to a computer, the City encourages you to help by providing support on the phone or in other ways that enable physical distancing," officials said.

For more information on the waitlist, housing programs and to apply visit

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