WASHINGTON — The Department of Veterans Affairs updated regulations Nov. 10 governing the Supportive Services for Veteran Families grant program to provide a more effective subsidy to Veterans in high-cost rental markets and to increase the cap in general housing assistance available to the most vulnerable Veteran families.
Under the new regulations, in certain communities, the SSVF grant will cover up to 50%, an increase from 35%, of eligible Veterans’ reasonable rent for two years without need for recertification.
“We know Veterans are increasingly vulnerable to homelessness and housing insecurity,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. “The updated regulations give Supportive Services for Veteran Families grantees more flexibility and tools to keep Veterans housed while also helping them increase their income and access permanent affordable housing solutions.”
The new rule also expands the maximum stay in emergency housing for unsheltered Veterans.
The original rule authorized placement for a Veteran and his or her spouse with dependents in emergency housing for up to 45 days, which proved often not enough time to locate stable and affordable permanent housing in highly competitive rental markets..
A Veteran and his or her spouse with dependents can now stay in emergency housing for a maximum of 60 days. The 15-day increase in length-of-stay is expected to have the most significant benefit to Veteran families in rental markets with few vacancies, as well as unsheltered homeless Veterans families.
Ending Veteran homelessness is a top priority for VA, aligned with the White House’s priority to promote housing stability by supporting vulnerable tenants.