Frequently Asked Questions about Affordable Housing

Regional Center of Orange County recognizes there are a lot of questions about affordable housing for people with developmental disabilities.  We have answered a few of these questions below.  If you have additional questions, please email us so we can help.

What is affordable housing?

What makes housing “affordable” is the cost of a rent or mortgage payment relative to the individual’s or family’s income. According to the federal government, rental housing is affordable if a household pays no more than 30 percent of their income for rent. According to mortgage lenders, a home is affordable if the mortgage payment is not more than 35 percent of the borrower’s income.

Most people with developmental disabilities receive monthly Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments of $870 per month ($10,440 per year) as their sole source of income. So-called “affordable” rent for someone receiving SSI payments as their sole source of income should be about $261 per month (i.e., 30 percent of SSI).

Where can I go to learn more about housing options for children with developmental disabilities? 

RCOC has a developed a guide for families of children with developmental disabilities looking for housing options.  If you have additional questions after reviewing this handbook, please contact your RCOC service coordinator.

Where can I go to learn more about housing options for adults with developmental disabilities? 

RCOC has developed a similar resource for adults with developmental disabilities to walk through the process of finding a place to call home.  If there are questions you have after reviewing this handbook, please contact your RCOC service coordinator.

Where are people served by RCOC living now?  
 2012
RCOC Residential Update

 All Persons Served

Persons Served Under 18

Persons Served Over 18

Family Home

13,281

8,254

5,027

Community Care Facility

1,580

66

1,514

State Developmental Center

107

0

107

Family Home Agency

82

1

81

Foster Home

99

95

4

Intermediate Care Facility

793

20

773

Independent Living

758

0

758

Supported Living

404

0

404

Skilled Nursing

93

0

93

Other*

88

29

59

Total

17,285

8,465

8,820

Other*
Acute General Hospital

2

0

0

Community Treatment

0

0

0

Correctional Institution

0

0

0

County Jail

0

0

0

Other

11

1

8

Out Of State

15

0

12

Psychiatric Treatment

9

0

9

Rehabilitation Center

4

0

2

Sierra Vista/State Operated

1

0

1

Sub-Acute

51

28

26

Transient/Homeless

1

0

1

Total, Other*

94

29

59

What are some of the models of successful housing?

Harbor Village and Integrity Cottages are two successful models RCOC has partnered in developing for people with developmental disabilities.  Shannon’s Mountain is in early development phase and will mirror the success of Harbor Village.

Who pays for the housing for people with developmental disabilities? 

There are several programs that can help pay for living expenses and provide other benefits to people with developmental disabilities.  The law requires regional centers to make sure you have accessed all of the other programs and benefits available before spending any regional center funds on your services.