What is Metrolist?
Metrolist is Boston's primary resource to find income-restricted housing. Metrolist has listings across Greater Boston, and information to help you find affordable housing.
Listings of income-restricted housing in Greater Boston
Information about income-restricted housing
Links to partner agencies
Most of our listings are income-restricted rental and ownership homes. These properties used public funding to build, and are required to advertise on Metrolist.
Metrolist also includes private market homes that are below market-rate.
- Subsidized housing
- Public housing
- Listings outside Boston's Metropolitan Statistical Area
Learn about Income-Restricted HousingAbout IR Housing
Income-restricted housing units are limited to households earning less than a set income level. Income levels are defined as a percentage of Area Median Income (AMI). This ensures housing is available to people across all income ranges.
Requirements and Preferences
Some homes require tenants to have qualifying attributes. Other homes give preference to people in these categories, but others can still apply. Examples of these categories include veterans, senior citizens, and first time homebuyers.
To ensure affordable housing goes to people who need it, you must provide proof of income before occupying an income-restricted home. Your income will be used to calculate your income eligibility. You must also give information about financial assets. We recommend that you gather these materials as soon as possible, so that if you are selected you can provide the necessary information.
In the meantime, you may estimate your AMI percentage to help begin your search. Please remember that this tool only estimates your AMI percentage. If you are uncertain whether you are eligible for a home, you should apply.
Income-restricted housing may be offered using one of several application processes. To apply for a listing, follow the instructions given on the listing page. Applications are sent directly to the property managers. If you have questions, you should contact the property manager shown on the listing.
Here are brief descriptions of different types of applications used on Metrolist. For more information, see our Income-Restricted Housing Guide.
Lotteries are the most common application process used for income-restricted housing. Overseen by the Mayor’s Office of Housing, lotteries increase equity and eliminate discrimination. For more information about the lottery process and what to expect, see our Income-Restricted Housing Guide.
Sometimes applications are accepted for buildings that that expect vacancies to open soon. Applicants get placed on a wait list, and those at the top of the wait list are contacted when a unit is available.
Units listed as first-come, first-served will be offered to the first eligible applicant. For these listings, you should apply early and have all your supporting documents ready if you get selected to move forward.
Market rate homes are not income-restricted and are first come first serve. Contact the agent shown on the listing for details about how to apply.
Each property manager handles applications differently, but if you are selected to move forward, you can expect the process to include these steps:
- Eligibility Screening: The agent will request proof of income as an initial screening before you can move forward with the process. If the unit is designated for specific carve-outs, such as veteran status or disability, the agent may ask for proof that you meet those criteria.
- Unit Viewing: Selected applicants are notified that they may view available units. After viewing the available units, the applicant may decide if they would like to proceed.
- Final Certification: When it’s time to complete the process you’ll need to submit complete financial information to ensure your eligibility. Your application will be certified by compliance officers before you can complete the rental or purchase process.
Information and Services
Mayor's Office of Housing
The Mayor's Office of Housing offers information and links to a range of housing topics.
Office of Housing Stability
The Office of Housing Stability helps residents find and maintain stable, safe, and affordable housing
Affordable Housing in Boston
A guide to the types of affordable housing available in Greater Boston
Income-Restricted Housing Guide
A guide to understanding income-restricted housing and how to apply
Boston Home Center
Helping Boston residents buy, improve, and keep their homes.
Fair Housing and Equity
We work to prevent discrimination and ensure fair and equitable access to housing for all people of Boston.
Workshops and Classes
Landlord ResourcesLandlord Resources
Property Listing Form
Use this form to list your properties on Metrolist
Landlord Incentive Program
The City is launching a program to support landlords who rent to Boston households moving out of homelessness.
We offer free counseling to landlords to support owner and tenant stabilization.
There are many organizations throughout Massachusetts helping people find and maintain stable homes.Partner Links