A housing authority, also called a housing department, manages public housing projects and screens prospective tenants according to income, age and disability criteria mandated by government agencies. It also provides information to the public about how to buy and sell homes and oversees certain homeownership financing programs. A housing department provides statistics about housing applications and public housing projects to social service and asset managers.
Housing programs sometimes provide subsidies for private landlord rentals to low-income tenants. Such programs are generally based on gross income and family size. A housing authority helps moderate-income families find affordable housing, and sometimes helps families build homes, especially those built in disadvantaged urban neighborhoods and rural areas designated for such programs.