Single Room Occupancy Program (SRO)
The SRO Program provides rental assistance for homeless persons in connection with the moderate rehabilitation of SRO dwellings. SRO housing contains units for occupancy by one person. These units may contain food preparation or sanitary facilities, or both.
The Single Room Occupancy (SRO) program is authorized by Section 441 of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. Under the program, HUD enters into Annual Contributions Contracts with public housing agencies (PHAs) in connection with the moderate rehabilitation of residential properties that, when rehabilitation is completed, will contain multiple single room dwelling units. These PHAs make Section 8 rental assistance payments to participating owners (i.e., landlords) on behalf of homeless individuals who rent the rehabilitated dwellings. The rental assistance payments cover the difference between a portion of the tenant's income (normally 30%) and the unit's rent, which must be within the fair market rent (FMR) established by HUD.
Rental assistance for SRO units is provided for a period of 10 years. Owners are compensated for the cost of some of the rehabilitation (as well as the other costs of owning and maintaining the property) through the rental assistance payments. To be eligible for assistance, a unit must receive a minimum of $3,000 of rehabilitation, including its prorated share of work to be accomplished on common areas or systems, to meet housing quality standards (HQS).
Assistance provided under the SRO program is designed to bring more standard SRO units into the local housing supply and to use those units to assist homeless persons. The SRO units might be in a rundown hotel, a Y, an old school, or even in a large abandoned home.