Senior Living
Low-income assisted living in Philadelphia

Low-income assisted living in Philadelphia

0 comment
low income assisted living in philadelphia

Philadelphia is home to an increasing number of senior citizens who cannot afford a comfortable living environment. There are several reasons for this, such as increased inflation, high cost of living, fixed income sources, and poor financial management. It can leave people with little choice but to search for low-income assisted living in Philadelphia as a solution. 

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the affordable senior assisted living facilities in Philadelphia that suit your lifestyle and financial situation. We will also discuss the available senior living assistance programs and resources in Philadelphia. So, read on to learn more!

What is “Low-income” in Philadelphia? 

“Low-income” in Philadelphia refers to individuals or households whose income falls below a specific threshold established by government entities or relevant agencies. In the Philadelphia metropolitan area, individuals or households with incomes equal to or under fifty percent of the median income are typically classified as low-income. This means that their earnings are at or below half of the area’s median income level. 

A household income of $37,800 or less for a family of two in Philadelphia would be considered low income. Similarly, a household income of $47,250 or less for a family of four would be considered low income according to the 50% threshold of the median income.  

These income thresholds are often used to determine eligibility for various low-income assistance programs, affordable housing, and other financial aid forms. It’s important to note that these figures can change over time as median incomes are updated and adjusted. 

Is assisted living expensive in Philadelphia? 

Assisted living facilities in Philadelphia are relatively expensive. As per the Genworth cost of care survey, the average assisted living cost in Philadelphia is $5,685/per month. It is higher than the Pennsylvania state average of $4100 as well as higher than the national average of $4500.  

However, the cost of senior assisted living in Philadelphia may vary depending on the level of care needed, facility location, amenities, and size. Thankfully, there are also several affordable senior housing in Philadelphia, PA for older adults to choose from. In addition, the state of Pennsylvania offers subsidized senior housing for eligible Philadelphia residents.

What is the cost of senior living facilities in Philadelphia? 

The cost of senior living facilities in Philadelphia, PA may vary depending on the location, care needs, amenities, and similar factors. But the table below shows the approx. monthly average cost of retirement communities in the city: 

Care Type 

Average Cost (Monthly) 

Home Care 


Assisted Living 


Nursing Homes 

Semi-private room: $13,444 

Private room: $14,296 

Memory Care 


Independent Living 


Philadelphia tax scenario for retirees: Key facts

The Philadelphia tax scenario is very much favorable towards retirees as they offer several tax exemptions and breaks for older adults. Let’s take a look at some of the key facts about the state’s tax environment:

In Philadelphia, the following incomes are not taxed:

Other important facts:

  • There is property tax in Philadelphia
  • The current sales tax rate in Philadelphia is 8%
  • Philadelphia does not impose a tax on items such as groceries, newspapers, coal, burial vaults, farming tools, etc.
  • The Homestead Exemption program offers property tax reductions for homeowners who reside in their primary residence.
  • The Local Services Tax (LST) rate in Philadelphia is currently $3.50 per week.

Senior living assistance programs and resources in Philadelphia 

Senior residents have easy access to many great senior living assistance programs and resources in Philadelphia. These programs make Philadelphia senior housing a little more accessible for older adults with a fixed income. Some of the options include: 

1. Subsidized senior housing Philadelphia 

Philadelphia offers a range of subsidized housing options for seniors, including low-income public housing, rental assistance, and other programs funded by the state or federal government. 

2. Housing Choice Voucher Program 

The Housing Choice Voucher Program, or Section 8, is a federal program administered by the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA) to provide housing assistance to low-income individuals and families. Eligibility is based on income, citizenship status, background checks, and housing needs. Vouchers are limited, and there may be waiting lists. 

3. Philadelphia Corporation for Aging (PCA) 

The Philadelphia Corporation for Aging (PCA) is a leading nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for older adults and disabled individuals. PCA is Philadelphia’s designated Area Agency for Aging. 

4. Philadelphia Housing Authority 

PHA provides affordable housing opportunities to low-income individuals and families in the city of Philadelphia. In addition, it offers senior housing assistance through a variety of programs such as: public housing, the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD), Section 8 Voucher Program, etc. 

5. Philadelphia Veterans Assistance 

The Philadelphia Veterans Assistance (VA) program provides health care services, educational workshops, and information sessions to local veterans. In addition, several veteran support organizations, such as Pennsylvania Wounded Warriors, provide peer support network courses designed specifically for returning veterans suffering from PTSD or traumatic brain injuries (TBI). 

6. The Congregate Housing Services Program (CHSP) 

The Philadelphia Congregate Housing Services Program (CHSP) is a city-run program that assists low-income or disabled seniors with housing support, meal services, healthcare information, and related supportive aids. 

Who qualifies for low-income assisted living in Philadelphia? 

To qualify for low-income assisted living in Philadelphia, a person must meet certain eligibility requirements established by the state and/or federal government. In general, as per HUD’s Section 202, an applicant must be at least 62 years old, and their income should not be more than 80% of the average household income of that particular county. For instance, if Philadelphia County has a median income of $32000, then the senior should have an income of $25600 to qualify for low-income and $16000 (50% of the median) for the very low-income category.  

In addition to meeting specific income requirements, applicants may also need to pass assessments of their physical health, mental capabilities, and any special needs they may have. They may also need to demonstrate specific financial needs through documents such as tax returns or pay stubs. It helps ensure that they can receive appropriate care in an assisted living facility setting. 

Low-income assisted living options in Philadelphia 

Low-income assisted living in Philadelphia provides a range of services to seniors who are unable to live independently. Let’s look at some of the affordable assisted living facilities in Philadelphia. 

1. Atria Center City 

Atria Center City is an assisted living community for low-income seniors located in Philadelphia, PA. The pricing starts from $2,395 per month and can go up to $10000 depending on the care needs and living arrangements. This affordable Philadelphia senior housing option provides a comfortable and secure environment tailored to each resident’s needs. The community features an array of amenities and services, including a full-service dining room, weekly housekeeping and laundry services, social activities, transportation options, and 24-hour onsite staff. 

2. Sunrise of Lafayette Hill 

Sunrise of Lafayette Hill is another low-income assisted living in Philadelphia. Its monthly pricing starts from $2700 and can go up based on individual care needs, added amenities, and extra comfort. The community assists residents with activities of daily living, and also has a dedicated memory care wing for older adults with memory impairment. In addition, Sunrise of Lafayette encourages an active lifestyle that includes physical activity, social interaction, and mental stimulation. 

3. Wesley Enhanced Living Burholme 

Wesley Enhanced Living Burholme is an assisted living in northeast Philadelphia with an affordable average daily cost of $124. The community is part of the Wesley Health Care System, a leading nonprofit healthcare system in the region. Besides assisted living, it facilitates independent living, rehabilitation services, skilled nursing care, and memory care. In addition, residents benefit from on-site amenities such as roof-covered garden, beauty salon, library, entertainment center, coffee bar, and more. 

4. The Terrace at Chestnut Hill 

The Terrace at Chestnut Hill is set in a 19-th century stone mansion, offering the best of Philadelphia senior living. This affordable community offers private apartments, nutritious meal plans, beautiful garden areas, a music room, and a spacious library. Apart from assisted living, The Terrace at Chestnut Hill facilitates memory care and respite care services. All in all, it provides older adults the opportunity to live independently while also having access to personal care services and amenities that promote health, independence, and socialization. 

5. Deer Meadows Retirement Community 

Deer Meadows Retirement Community is an excellent choice for affordable senior housing in Philadelphia. It offers round-the-clock supervision, helps with activities of daily living, and promotes an active lifestyle. The facility also provides long-term care, such as skilled nursing, dementia care, cancer care, pain management, and so on. The monthly cost of care ranges between $2395 to $10,200. Deer Meadows strives to provide a safe, secure, and welcoming place that offers seniors the opportunity to live life fully while receiving the care they need. 

6. St John Neumann Center 

St John Neumann Center is another low-income assisted living in Philadelphia. Even though they mainly provide nursing home and memory care services, they also provide assisted living services. The cost of care varies depending on individual requirements, but the usual monthly price range is about $1,295 to $10,646. At St John, residents receive a variety of services, including rehab facilities, therapy programs, dementia care, end-of-life care, and more. They have various recreational activities such as crafts & art projects, community outings, movie nights, fitness classes, pet therapy, etc. 

Final thoughts 

We can all agree that affordable senior housing in Philadelphia is still a concern for many older adults with financial difficulties. However, it is comforting to learn that there are organizations and supportive programs to aid the vulnerable communities.  

We hope each person reading this blog post will gain some insights into the available low-income assisted living in Philadelphia as well as the existing financial aid and assistance programs in the city.  

We also urge to the local authorities to make substantial change and advocate for increased funding or policies which could improve access of care options the elderly members of the community. After all, one small step from each of us can result in big changes! 

Related articles: 


  • What is the income limit for senior housing in PA? 

The income limit for senior housing in Pennsylvania varies depending on the program and the area. However, the general income limit for a single person is $39,700 maximum, and for couples, the limit is $45,350. Also note that the applicant must be 62 years or older or disabled. 

  • What is the Real Estate Tax freeze in Philadelphia?

The Real Estate Tax Freeze program in Philadelphia provides a valuable benefit to eligible low-income senior citizens by ensuring that their property tax payment remains fixed, regardless of fluctuations in their property assessment or tax rate.

This means that even if there are changes in the assessed value of their property or adjustments to the tax rate set by the city, participants in the program are protected from any increase in their annual property tax burden. This can provide stability and financial relief for seniors on fixed incomes who may face challenges in keeping up with rising property taxes.

  • Is Philadelphia retirement-friendly? 

Philadelphia is a very retirement-friendly city, currently ranking at 19, on the list of most retirement-friendly cities in the US. Philly residents enjoy various senior-friendly amenities and tax breaks. For example, Pennsylvania does not impose tax on retirement income which means pension funds, Social Security benefits, and similar income are not taxable here.  

Besides, the city offers an abundance of senior living communities, healthcare services, and transportation facilities. Additionally, Philadelphia is home to many cultural attractions, museums, shopping centers, and recreational opportunities that can be enjoyed by both residents and visitors alike. All these factors make Philadelphia an excellent choice for retirees. 

  • Who qualifies for subsidized housing in Philadelphia? 

In Philadelphia, subsidized housing is available to low-income individuals and families as well as seniors, persons with disabilities, and veterans. To qualify for subsidized housing in Philadelphia, applicants’ must meet certain income and age requirements. 

  • Who qualifies for Section 8 in Philadelphia? 

To qualify for Section 8 in Philadelphia, individuals or households must meet certain criteria set by the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA). These criteria include: 

  1. Household income needs to fall within the income limits set by the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA), typically at most 50% of the area median income (AMI). 
  2. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or have eligible immigration status. 
  3. Applicants and household members over 18 years old must pass criminal background checks conducted by the PHA. 
  4. Applicants must exhibit a need for housing assistance, such as experiencing homelessness or living in substandard housing. 

Related Posts