Submit your application and all applicable supporting documents to ATH by mail, fax or in person.
350 King St East, Suite 110
Hamilton, Ontario L8N 3Y3
Changes to Social Housing
The Province is making changes to Social Housing for applicants and tenants that will impact your housing application.
If you are on the Access to Housing centralized wait list for Social Housing or you already live in social housing and are waiting to transfer into a different unit, the changes below will impact you.
As of January 1, 2021, all applicants on the Access to Housing centralized wait list for Rent-Geared-to-Income (RGI) housing subsidy assistance will only receive one (1) offer of housing. This change will help people move into housing more quickly.
Currently, you can refuse up to three (3) offers of housing before being removed from the wait list. As of January 1, 2021, you can receive one (1) offer of housing when you are the next person on the wait list.
If you do not accept this offer, you may lose your place on the wait list and your application may be cancelled. Offers will not be counted if they constitute exceptional circumstances.
Any refusals before January 1, 2021 will not impact your eligibility.
If your application is cancelled, you will have to reapply and wait until your name reaches the top of the wait list again before receiving an offer. Cancellation from the wait list can be reviewed by the Social Housing Review Panel. The process for requesting a Review will be outlined in your cancellation letter.
Update your Information Yearly
Offers of housing are based on the building selections we have on file for you. Make sure you only select buildings you want to live in or would accept if offered. It is a good idea to review your information and building selections each year. If you are satisfied with your current building selections, you do not have to do anything.
To review or update your building selections, contact Access to Housing:
Access to Housing or ATH helps with the application process and maintains the central waiting list for subsidized housing for social housing providers in Hamilton.
Subsidized housing is rent‐geared‐to‐income or RGI housing which is based on 30% of a household’s gross monthly income or if the household is receiving assistance from Ontario Works or the Ontario Disability Support Program, a social assistance rent scale is applied. Additional charges may apply depending on the building (i.e. parking/ utilities).
- ATH is not a landlord and does not offer housing to applicants.
- They can not predict or guess when you will be housed.
- They do not provide emergency shelters or housing.
- List of emergency shelters
To qualify for social housing in Hamilton, applicants must:
- Be 16 years of age or older and be able to live independently
- Each member of the household must be a Canadian Citizen, Landed Immigrant or Refugee Claimant
- No member of the household has a deportation order, departure or exclusion order under the Immigration Act
- No member of the household owes arrears for rent or damage to any social housing provider in Ontario
- If you own residential property, you must agree to sell within 180 days after RGI assistance is received
Apply for Subsidized Housing
Download, print and complete forms
Read instructions carefully, complete the application form using blue or black pen. Ensure that the application is signed by each member of the household who is 16 years or older and listed as on the application form.
Complete the below forms as required based on your circumstance.
- Application for Housing
- Building Selection Form
- Special Needs Form - Modified Unit Requests
- Access to Housing Map of Geographic Areas
- Forms for Priority Applications
Submit application and supporting documents
Applications must be submitted to ATH by mail, fax or in person.
Access to Housing (ATH)
350 King St East, Suite 110 - First Place
Hamilton, Ontario L8N 3Y3
Applications cannot be submitted online. ATH determines eligibility for Rent-Geared-to-Income (RGI) housing based on a complete application only. Your application will not be considered for eligibility if the application form is incomplete or if documents are missing.
If you have any questions, call ATH at 905-546-2424 ext. 3708.
Applications & Forms
Applications and forms are available through all non-profit housing providers and from the following locations.
The following is a list of required documents that must be provided with your application for everyone listed on the application form. Some items may not apply to some individuals.
- Copies of Canadian birth certificates, Canadian passport, landed immigrant, permanent resident card or refugee claimant documents for all members of the household.
- Custody documentation (i.e. Court/ lawyer/ CAS, ex-partner, etc.).
- Copy of a repayment schedule for anyone in your household who owes money to any social housing provider in Ontario.
- Copies of household monthly income of you and all persons who will be living with you.
- Self-employed - please provide proof of income such as your latest income tax, investment Interest income, pay stubs, etc.
- Copies of owned assets of all household.
- If pregnant, provide proof of pregnancy (i.e. doctors note)
- If you are claiming homelessness, abuse, a serious medical condition, a dangerous or life threatening situation, etc., proof is required from someone in a professional position (court/ lawyer/ doctor/ police/ worker).
Applications submitted without the requested documents will not be processed. You will be advised in writing that your application is incomplete. You will not be placed on the waiting list, until all the required documents are received.
Applicants for social housing have a number of responsibilities:
- You are responsible to notify ATH of any changes to your information in order to maintain your eligibility status
- You are responsible to confirm your interest in remaining on the waiting list for housing. This confirmation must be done with ATH once a year. A reminder letter will be sent to you.
Applicants must notify Access to Housing (ATH) if:
- Your address changes
- Your phone number changes
- You want to live in locations other than those you chose on your application
- The number of people in your household changes
- The contact person on your application changes
- Your income changes
- Your Immigration status changes
Notice of any change in any information or documents must be submitted within 30 business days of the change. A longer time as may be allowed by ATH or the City of Hamilton.
The centralized waiting list is a modified-chronological housing wait list of all applicants eligible for rent-geared-to-income or RGI assistance in Hamilton. The list is maintained in compliance with the Housing Services Act, 2011 and approved local rules and standards.
Access to Housing or ATH will process all completed applications for subsided housing. If you are eligible, ATH will add you to the centralized waiting list. This waiting list is based on the date that you apply for housing. This means your name will be added to the waiting list for all the locations you noted on the Building Selection Form.
You will be offered housing when you are #1 on the waitlist through the Housing Provider that you selected. The staff at ATH cannot predict or guess when you will be housed. It will depend on the status your file was given, the date you applied for housing, and your housing selections.
A Non-Profit Landlord will contact you with an offer of accommodation. You will only receive one offer. If you refuse that offer of accommodation your application will be cancelled and you will have to reapply and start again at the beginning. You have the right to request a review of any cancelled application through the Social Housing Review Panel
Please call ATH to report any changes of address, telephone number or who will be living with you. It is important that you keep your application up to date and that you respond quickly to ATH’s requests for additional information. There is a time limit for responding.
If you want to make changes to your selection of housing choices, you must come to the ATH office to do so.
Please do not call ATH to ask when you will be offered housing. Non-Profit Landlords select applicants from the waiting list by date of application on a first come, first served basis. The only way you will move up on the waitlist is when applicants ahead of you on the list are offered housing.
If your contact information changes, tell us right away. We will make your file inactive if we cannot contact you. You cannot be offered housing if your file is inactive.
Keep your application up to date
The government regulations for social housing make it your responsibility to keep your application up to date. If you do not tell us about changes in your information, you could lose your place on the waiting list. Access to Housing will also review your eligibility once a year.
Every member of your household must continue to meet the five conditions listed under “Who can apply for subsidized housing?”
Review your needs regularly
Review your housing needs regularly and tell us right away if your needs or preferences change.