Shallow Rent

In 2019 PHDC launched its new Shallow Rent program to provide rent assistance for tenants living in affordable housing projects who are rent burdened (i.e., spending more than 30% of their income on rent). Owners and/or property managers of affordable housing properties with income-restricted rental units that were built or substantially renovated with federal, state, or local subsidies are eligible for this program. The program is designed to provide monthly rent vouchers not to exceed $500 a month (Shallow Rent Vouchers) to tenants who are leasing units in the City of Philadelphia at rent levels that exceed 30% of their gross income.


Q Can you explain the Shallow Rent Program?
A The Shallow Rent Program will provide up to $500 monthly voucher to tenants living in an affordable housing project built or substantially renovated with federal, state or local subsidy where the tenant is paying more than 30% of household income on rent and who are at risk of being evicted.

Q Are property managers, corporate entities, and nonprofit organization eligible to apply?
A Yes, the respondents must serve as the owners, operators, and or property managers of the subsidized income restricted affordable housing projects.

Q Is the expectation that even individual property owners looking to apply for this program carry specific insurance?
A Participants will need to have the required insurance:

  • Commercial General Liability Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation and Employer’s Liability Insurance
  • Automobile Liability Insurance
  • Property Insurance (including flood insurance if in a flood zone)
  • Crime Insurance.

Q Are owners of properties currently in development or under construction eligible to apply?
A No, because the respondents are applying on behalf of specific cost-burdened tenants. Projects must be far enough along that tenants have already been identified. Tenants must also have an active, enforceable lease, prior to the date that PHDC issues the first voucher.

Q Is this program open to owners and operators of affordable units on the private market?
A No, this specific opportunity in only open to managers, operators, and owners of subsidized income restricted affordable housing projects.

Q Are there any types of subsidies that would exclude someone, even if they’re paying more than 30% of income on rent?
A No, this voucher may be layered with other subsidies.

Q Are arrearages a factor in a tenant’s eligibility?
A No, so long as the tenants are on good standing and not in default on their active arrearage agreement with their landlords.

Q Do tenants apply directly to PHDC for vouchers?
A No. Property managers/owners must apply on behalf of tenant

Q Can this subsidy help residents living in a LIHTC and PHA project?
A Yes, this voucher is to help those residents living in a subsidized income restricted affordable housing projects paying more than 30% of their household income on rent.