The terms “affordable housing” and “public housing” are frequently used interchangeably, causing a lot of confusion in the process. They are actually two very different.
Affordable housing refers to housing units that are affordable by that section of society whose income is below the median household income. Houses are owned by the households. Families buy the homes at affordable prices.
The concept of Public Housing was introduced by the United States government to provide housing for low-income families, disabled persons, and the elderly. These families or persons must meet certain eligibility requirements to participate in the program and may be required to pay a nominal amount of rent. The units are considered public because they are funded, owned, and administered by government authorities.
How Public Housing Transformed New York City 1935-67