Public Housing for Families

HRA owns and manages 27 units of state-assisted public housing for income-eligible families in multiple Franklin County towns including Bernardston, Buckland, Charlemont, Northfield, and Orange. All properties owned or managed by HRA are non-smoking properties. State-aided family housing units range in size from 2 to 4 bedrooms with laundry hook-ups in each unit, some yard space, and parking. Each home is located within reasonable proximity to stores, transportation, places of worship, and other public facilities. A 24-hour emergency on-call property management and maintenance service number is also available.

Program Description

Households living in state-aided family housing pay 30% of household income for rent. The Department of Housing and Community Development provides subsidy funds to HRA to cover maintenance and operating costs of the housing facilities.


Income limits for admission of an applicant to State Aided Public Housing shall be the “low Income Limits “80% AMI” annually set by HUD. Income limit information can be found below (see chart) and at

Income Eligibility Chart

Effective 2023

Current Wait List Length

Waiting times vary greatly depending on unit turn-over and priority applications. No wait time estimate should be taken as any form of guarantee. The current average wait time for state-aided family housing through HRA is two years.

How to Apply

There are two ways to fill out an application for both Congregate & Family State-Aided Public Housing:

  1. Download and print the PDF applications shown below, or
  2. call us and stop by the office to pick one up.

Application Process

Further Screening Processes

Once it is determined that a household meets basic status and income requirements, applicants are further screened in accordance with HRA policy, federal and state fair housing laws, and regulations set forth by EOHLC. As part of the application process, applicants must authorize HRA to conduct thorough background checks including criminal history (including a sex offender record information check), rental history, credit history and a personal reference check.

Preferences and Priority

Applicants are selected in chronological order by date of completed application. However, preference is given to applicants who are veterans of the United States Armed Services. Preference is also given to racial minorities in compliance with affirmative action laws, and to applicants who reside in the town in which the housing facility is located. Priority may be given if the applicant is homeless through no fault of their own.