Lambton County

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 Portable Housing Benefit 

Portable Housing Benefit

The Portable Housing Benefits (PHB) is a new program offered by the Housing Services Department that will provide a monthly benefit to eligible participants. This benefit will help make market rental units affordable in Lambton County. The PHB is an alternative to RGI and will continue as long as participants meet eligibility requirements. The PHB is portable and can be applied to private market rental leases anywhere within Lambton County..

Who is eligible?
If you are eligible for RGI housing and have filed your most recent Canada Revenue Agency tax return, you may be eligible for the PHB. If you express interest and are offered a benefit, you will be given a maximum of 60 days to find a private market rental unit within Lambton County and sign a lease. If you are currently living in a private market unit in Lambton County and have signed a lease, your current home may meet program requirements.

Household Selection:
Participants are selected in the same way they are for traditional RGI units. A waitlist will be maintained for the PHB. When there is an available benefit because a household leaves the program, a new household will be selected from the PHB waitlist by the same rules that RGI units are offered.

Refusals:
If you are offered a benefit and cannot find a rental within 60 days or do not accept the benefit, this will count as an “offer of housing” refusal. Please remember, after three refusals your application will be cancelled.

Payments:
The benefit payments will be made by direct deposit directly to the household. Direct deposit information must be supplied to participate in this program.  The benefit is taxable and you will receive a T5007 Statement of Benefits annually from the County of Lambton.

Portability:
Program funding is portable. If you move within Lambton County, the funding goes with you as long as you remain eligible for the program.

Income Tax Filing:
All members of the household with income must file income tax returns and receive a Notice of Assessment from the Canada Revenue Agency. Failure to file income tax returns and receive a Notice of Assessment annually by July 1 will result in the household no longer being eligible for the PHB.

Amount of Benefit:
The portable benefit amount is calculated differently than the standard RGI calculation. The amount of the benefit will be calculated as follows:

(80% AMR) less (AFNI x 30% / 12)

Where AMR (Average Market Rent) is the average market rent for a rental unit of an appropriate size and type for the household, based on local occupancy standards, in the Service Manager's service area as determined by CMHC or Alternate AMR, if approved. The 2019 Alternate AMR is as follows:
• 1 bed - $950
• 2 bed -  $1,150
• 3 bed - $1,400
• 4 bed or larger - $1,700

Where AFNI (Adjusted Family Net Income) is equal to the sum of the net income of each member of the household aged 16 and older, excluding dependents attending a recognized educational institution. Net income is the amount on line 236 of an individual's latest Notice of Assessment, less any Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) income plus any RDSP amounts repaid. 

If in receipt of Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Program, the benefit amount will be the lessor between the above calculation and the difference between your actual shelter cost and the maximum shelter allowance.

Maximum Amount of Benefit - the maximum amount of the monthly benefits is calculated as 80% AMR - $85. Despite this calculation, if the household is in receipt of Social Assistance (OW or ODSP) the maximum amount of benefit is the actual shelter cost less maximum shelter allowance.

Minimum Amount of Benefit - if the amount of the calculated monthly benefit is less than $25, the benefit amount is determined to be $0.

Examples of PHB Calculation

Example 1: A single individual with a 2018 annual income of $18,000 would receive a monthly benefit of $310.00.

(80% of $950) less (30% of $18,000 / 12) = $310.00

Example 2: A single individual with a 2018 annual income of $18,000 who is now on ODSP with a total shelter cost of $900 would receive a monthly benefit of $310.00

Lessor of:   (80% of $950) less (30% of $18,000 / 12) = 310
And             $900 - $497 = $403

Example 3: A single parent with 2 children under the age of 16 with a 2018 annual income of $22,000 would receive a monthly benefit of $570.00.

(80% of $1,400) less (30% of $22,000 / 12) = $570.00

Example 4: A couple with an adult child no longer in school with a combined 2018 household annual income of $36,000 would receive a monthly benefit of $0.

(80% of $1,150) less (30% of $36,000 / 12) = $20
Minimum Amount = if the monthly benefit is less than $25, the benefit is $0.

Example 5: A single individual with a 2018 annual income of $3,000 would receive a monthly benefit of $675.

(80% of $950) less (30% of $3,000 / 12) = $685
Maximum benefit amount is (80% of $950) less $85 = 675

Example 6: A single individual with 2 children under the age of 16 with a 2018 annual income of $12,000 who is currently in receipt of Ontario Works with a total shelter cost of $1,300 would receive a monthly benefit of $603.

Lessor of:  (80% of $1,400) less (30% of $12,000 / 12) = $820.00
  $1,300 less $697 = $603

Visit the Applying for Housing page for information on how to apply.