Portable Housing Benefit

A Portable Housing Benefit provides low to moderate income households with a monthly payment to help with rental costs in the private housing market. The benefit belongs to the individual and can be used to help pay rent anywhere in Ottawa.

Portable Housing Benefits are found under the Rent Supplement Program.

  • You will get a monthly payment to help pay your rent.
  • Households must find their own private rental market housing in Ottawa.
  • Your monthly benefit is calculated using your household’s adjusted family net income as reported on your annual Notice of Assessment Line 23600. The monthly benefit is the difference between 30 per cent of your net income reported on your notice of assessment, divided by 12, and 80 per cent of the average market rent for Ottawa.
  • The housing benefit belongs to you. This means you can take it with you if you move to another address anywhere in Ottawa.
  • You must be on The Social Housing Registry of Ottawa’s Centralized Wait List.
  • Priority groups are approved for each Portable Housing Benefit program when funding is available.
  • Households on the Centralized Wait List with the oldest application dates will be considered. for any programs. Invitation letters are directly sent to eligible households.
  • Must agree to remove your name from all wait lists for subsidized housing once approved.
  • Eligibility is reviewed once a year.


To be eligible for a Portable Housing Benefit, you must apply to The Social Housing Registry of Ottawa. See eligibility rules. Other rules may apply.

What you need

All household members must provide proof of:

All household members 16 years of age and older must sign the form.


Mail / in-person

Fill out an Application for Rent-Geared-to-Income Housing in Ottawa with the Social Housing Registry. Your name will be added to the Centralized Wait List for subsidized housing.


Call 613-526-2088 to book an appointment, Monday to Friday from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. You can also book an appointment online with The Social Housing Registry of Ottawa.

What’s next

  • Make sure The Social Housing Registry of Ottawa always has your most up to date contact information (phone number, email and/or address).
  • If you are eligible for a Portable Housing Benefit, you will receive an invitation letter by mail.
  • All household members must file income taxes each year.


For information about the status of your application with The Social Housing Registry of Ottawa, call 613-526-2088 from Monday to Friday, 8:30 to 4:30 pm. TTY: 613-580-2401.

For more information about the Portable Housing Benefit, email the City of Ottawa at hainquiry_enqueteal@ottawa.ca.