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FSS Program

Do you want to earn free money?

The Abilene Housing Authority Family Self-Sufficiency Program can help you realize your dreams!

Have you been thinking of future plans such as going back to school... finding a better paying job... getting bills under control... improving your credit... becoming a homeowner? The Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program can help you make these dreams become a reality! You are capable of amazing things!


Housing Choice Voucher holders are eligible. Note: You cannot lose your housing subsidy by participating, completing, or no-compliance in this program! It's WIN-WIN.

FSS Program Goals:

Within 5 years you must:

  • Attain and/or maintain full-time suitable employment (part-time for disabled) and;
  • Be free of TANF cash benefits for 12 consecutive months (if applicable)

You Can Earn Free Money. Yes, REALLY!

Abilene Housing Authority will deposit money monthly into a special Savings Account depending on increases in wages (Earned Income)

Enroll in the FSS Program BEFORE you start working for optimum savings

FSS offers Resources and Referrals to:

  • One-on-One Support
  • Affordable Childcare
  • Financial Stability
  • Matched Savings
  • Career Advising
  • Job Skills Training
  • Building & Rebuilding Credit
  • Home Ownership
  • and More


Am I qualified/eligible for Family Self Sufficiency?

You are qualified if you have the following:

  • A current participant on Housing Choice Voucher program
  • You want to work at least 32 hours per week (or suitable part-time if disabled)

I'm already working.  Can I still join FSS?

Yes, you are still eligible for FSS as long as you have other self-sufficiency goals, such as:

  • Maintain employment
  • Increase wages
  • Attain promotion
  • Increase employment skills
  • Explore Homeownership
  • Save money
  • Financial Stability
  • Attain suitable childcare
  • Etc.

What is escrow?

In regards to the FSS program, escrow refers to payments that are deposited into a savings account on your behalf in order to assist you in meeting your FSS goals.  These funds are generated by this basic formula: Current Rent (calculations completed after you begin employment/ earn more income etc.) minus Base Rent (the amount calculated at the beginning of your FSS contract) = escrow deposit.  This means that the more you earn, the more your savings can grow. 

Does the escrow start as soon as I sign the FSS contract?

No, the escrow never starts when you sign the contract or when the contract becomes effective.  The FSS Escrow doesn't begin to have deposits until:

  • FSS Contract becomes effective (FSS contract states current Annual Income, Earned Income, Family Rent)
  • A rent calculation is completed by Abilene Housing Authority after the FSS Contract becomes effective.  i.e. when Family Rent has increased above what is stated on FSS Contract or Wages/ Earned Income has increased above what is stated on FSS Contract.

How much escrow will I get?

Escrows vary depending on your family's income as it varies throughout the term of your FSS contract.  Some families don't earn an escrow at all, but are still successful at completing their self-sufficiency goals.

What are the benefits of FSS besides the "free money"?

The FSS Program Coordinator is available for one-on-one assistance throughout your FSS contract. This is to provide encouragement and referrals to area resources in assisting you with completing all of your self-sufficiency goals. In addition, free workshops and family fun activities are offered to FSS participants throughout the year.