Help for Families with Low-Incomes

There is a waiting list for program. The waiting list for RAP is currently closed. The waiting list only opens to new applications when most people on the list have been served.

The Rental Assistance Program (RAP) is a state-funded program that helps families with low-incomes afford safe housing in the private market. It is very similar to the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8). Eligible participants who receive RAP certificates are free to choose their own rental housing, including apartments, townhouses, and single-family homes. Certificates are issued by a local housing authority.

Once approved, the local housing authority determines a maximum allowable rent, which limits the amount of rent a tenant may pay after signing a lease with their landlord. The maximum allowable rent is generally calculated based on the amount needed to rent a moderately-priced dwelling in the local housing market.

Recipients of RAP certificates have the freedom to choose the rental housing and location which best suits their needs. Housing units must meet the quality and safety standards outlined by the local housing authority before the residence can be approved.

The local housing authority pays a rent subsidy to the landlord on behalf of the family, who may have to pay the difference between the rent charged and the subsidy. The family must pay 40% of their monthly adjusted gross income for rent and utilities in addition to any outstanding amounts if the unit rent is greater than the payment standard. This means that the tenant’s rent payment equals the household’s monthly income multiplied by 40%. For older adults and people with disabilities, the recipient has to pay 30% of their monthly income.

Recipients of RAP certificates are allowed to move within Connecticut and continue receiving housing support as long as the local housing authority is properly notified in advance, the existing rental agreement has been terminated, and the recipient finds acceptable alternate housing.

Eligibility Criteria

Eligibility for the Rental Assistance Program is determined by the following factors:

  • Limited to US citizens and specified categories of non-citizens who have eligible immigration status.
  • The household’s annual gross income, which may not exceed 50% of the median income for the geographic location in which the family chooses to live in.

The local housing authority will collect and review the applicant’s financial information to determine eligibility and the amount of housing assistance disbursed.

Types of Services & Supports that can be used for Rental Assistance Program

The Rental Assistance Program offers low-income families, older adults, and people with disabilities financial assistance and access to affordable and safe housing throughout the State. Once a residency has been approved by the local housing authority, a monthly housing subsidy is paid to the landlord on behalf of the family. The recipient pays their portion of the rent and may have to pay any outstanding amount if the rent charged exceeds the maximum allowable rent.

Recipients can visit the Department of Housing website to learn more information about RAP.


There is a waiting list for the program. The waiting list for Section 8/HCV/RAP is currently closed. The waiting list only opens to new applications when most people on the list have been served.

When the list is open to new applications, a notice will be posted in local newspapers and at the Housing Choice Voucher Program website, a service provided by CT Infoline. Interested parties can register to receive automatic notice of openings on waiting lists. These notices also provide application information.

Once determined eligible, the applicant will be placed on a waiting list unless Section 8/HCV/RAP is able to assist the family immediately. Since the demand for housing assistance often exceeds the resources available to the Section 8/HCV/RAP program, long waiting periods are common.

The Department of Housing’s waitlists are currently closed to applications. Individuals may visit United Way of Connecticut to register for email notifications of when the waiting lists are opened.