Page Reviewed / Updated – June 7, 2024

Program Description

The Senior Access Program (SAP), also known as the Senior Housing Modification Program or the Senior Housing Accessibility Modifications Program, is designed to provide financial assistance to older, low- to moderate-income Alaska residents to help them afford the cost of making home modifications.

Modifications — such as wheelchair ramps, grab bars, chair lifts / stair lifts, and roll-in showers — must be intended to increase a home’s accessibility for those with disabilities and those experiencing other challenges associated with aging.

The program’s larger objective is to reduce nursing home placements (and the associated costs) by helping the elderly remain living in their homes or in small assisted living facilities. The Senior Access Program is funded by the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) and is administered locally through two non-profit agencies.

Eligibility Guidelines

General Requirements

  • Applicant must be at least 55 years old and a resident of Alaska. 
  • A current need must exist; the applicant cannot be anticipating a future need.

Property Requirements

The Senior Access Program is open to both homeowners and renters alike, although the maximum grant amount varies with each beneficiary group. Any home must be the applicant’s primary and principle residence, and the applicant must show proof that he or she owns the home or provide a rental agreement, in the event he or she rents the home.

Examples of eligible residences include:

  • Single family homes
  • Duplexes, triplexes and quadplexes
  • State licensed assisted living facilities with no more than five beds

Financial Requirements

Income Limits
The annual income of the household (not the individual) cannot exceed 100% of their geographic area’s average household income. According to The Alaska Housing Finance corporation, the average individual income in Alaska for 2024 ranges from $74,850 to $92,200. But this amount will change depending on the household size and the applicant’s geographic area.

Visit the Alaska page of the US Census Bureau’s website to see median income by county. It is worth noting that in cases of severe need, it is possible for households whose income exceeds these limits to receive a special waiver.

In addition to not exceeding the income limit, an applicant must have exhausted other possible sources of funding such as Medicaid, Medicare or the Veteran’s Administration.

Benefits and Services

Benefits are determined by the type of residence and the location/cost area. The cost area is divided into three categories: Moderate Cost Area, Intermediate Cost Area, High Cost Area. Alaska defines these areas as follows:

  • Moderate Cost Area: Communities connected by road or rail to Anchorage or Fairbanks
  • Intermediate Cost Area: Communities not connected by road or rail to Anchorage or Fairbanks that do not meet the definition of a Small Community
  • High Cost Area: Communities not connected by road or rail to Anchorage or Fairbanks that meet the definition of a Small Community

The grant amounts below are current as of January 2024

Moderate Cost Area Intermediate Cost Area High Cost Area
Owner $25,000 $30,000 $35,000
Renter $20,000 $25,000 $30,000

For assisted living facilities that are licensed by the state and have a maximum of five beds, the amount is capped at $10,000, and $20,000 total per assisted living facility. 

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How to Apply / Learn More

The Senior Access Program is available statewide and is administered locally by the two agencies listed in the chart below. To apply, one should contact the agency nearest them. Project priority is determined by the agency providing services, but commonly priority is given in the order that applications are received.

Name Regions Phone
Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc. Southeast, Northern, & Southwest Economic Regions 800-478-7227
Alaska Community Development Corporation Anchorage, Mat-Su, Fairbanks / North Pole, Kenai, Kodiak, Gulf Coast Economic Region, & Interior Economic Region 800-478-8080

Additional information about this program is available here