Housing supplements for retirees

​Monthly housing supplements help eligible retirees to remain in their homes or move to retirement facilities.

older couple on laptop

“I am so grateful for the Board's help with housing costs ... Giving and receiving — that's what 'church' is all about.” 

Example

A 74-year-old retired church worker, Mr. Adams, served the PC(USA) and participated in the Pension Plan for 22 years. He now lives in an independent living unit of a retirement community.

Mr. Adams' total retirement income is $32,000 a year ($2,667 per month), which is below the $44,325 a year maximum in 2019 ($45,600 in 2020). His assets add up to nearly $17,500, which is below the $25,000 maximum allowable for a single person in an independent living unit of a retirement community. His total housing expenses are $1,550 per month, which is below the $1,800 maximum monthly housing expenses considered for this grant.

Under the program, Mr. Adams will contribute 40 percent of his total monthly income, or $1,067 per month ($2,667 x .4 = $1,067). The difference between his total housing expenses ($1,550) and 40 percent of his monthly income ($1,067) is $483.

The Assistance Program would provide Mr. Adams with a monthly Housing Supplement of $483.

The Assistance Program of the Board of Pensions provides monthly Housing Supplements to eligible retired Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ministers and employees and their surviving spouses in need so they may remain in their own homes or move to retirement facilities in locations of their choice.

Housing Supplements are ongoing, unless the recipient's financial circumstances change.

In addition, depending on the levels of personal income and assets, retired plan members ages 65 or older may receive one-time financial assistance, paid in a lump sum, to help with the entrance fee to a retirement home.

Who's eligible

To qualify, retired members or surviving spouses must

  • be age 65 or older;
  • be receiving a retirement or survivor's pension from the Benefits Plan;
  • have 20 or more years of service to the PC(USA) and a commensurate period of participation in the Pension Plan*;
  • have total annual income from all sources of $44,325 or less in 2019; $45,600 in 2020 ($60,910 or less for assisted living in 2019; $66,880 or less in 2020); and
  • have assets that do not exceed the maximums in the Housing Supplement guidelines chart.
Housing Supplement guidelines​
​Your living situation ​Maximum total assets allowed ​Maximum monthly housing expenses considered by Assistance Program ​Percentage of your income to be contributed toward housing expenses
​Single​Couple
​Home or apartment in the general community$35,000$50,000

$1,300

​40%

​Independent living unit in a retirement community$25,000$40,000

​$1,800

40%

​Congregate living unit (separate living quarters, no cooking facilities) in a retirement community$25,000$40,000

​$2,700

67%

​Assisted living unit in a retirement community$20,000$35,000​$4,000​67%

 *Partial supplementation may be available for those with at least 10 but fewer than 20 years of service to the PC(USA), during which they participated in the pension portion of the Benefits Plan.

Other factors affecting eligibility

These additional factors may affect your eligibility for a Housing Supplement.

Service

You will receive years-of-service credit for any years of total disability under the plan.

Assets

Personal assets are a significant consideration in determining Housing Supplement eligibility, as the Assistance Program expects members to first use their own income and assets to maintain their quality of life.

  • Assets are items of value owned, such as balances in checking and savings accounts, principal in investment accounts, a house or other real estate, art, and jewelry. The value of all real estate is included among your assets, except if you live in the home for which you are seeking Housing Supplement assistance.
  • Assets are not monies paid to you on a regular basis from an outside source, such as a pension, Social Security, interest, or dividends.
  • You may reduce your assets to the maximum total assets allowed by paying (in full or in part) an entrance fee to a retirement home or prepaying funeral expenses. You may not divert funds to protect an estate or to provide benefits for family members.

Income Sources

The Board assumes you have secured alternate protection if you are not receiving Social Security benefits.

Amount

The amount of support you may receive depends on your total income from all sources, your assets, and your marital status. See Housing Supplement guidelines chart.

In addition to monthly Housing Supplements, you may be eligible to receive a lump-sum Housing Supplement of up to $20,000 to help pay the entrance fee to a continuing care retirement community. To qualify, your total assets minus the entrance fee must be less than the maximum total assets allowed.

How to apply

  • Complete, sign, and submit the confidential Income/Housing Supplement Application form to the Board of Pensions at the address on the form.
  • You will be notified in writing of the results of the application's evaluation, typically within 30 days.

 

 

Need help?

​Call the Board at 800-773-7752 (800-PRESPLAN).