Certificate of Preference is a document issued by the former San Francisco Redevelopment Agency (“Agency”) to displaced residents and businesses in the 1960’s when the Agency was implementing its federally-funded urban renewal program. MOH now administers this program. MOH is not the Housing Authority, nor does MOH administer the Section 8 program. This Certificate gives such households preferential consideration for MOH-sponsored housing and business opportunities in Redevelopment Project Areas.
For all housing opportunities, MOH gives special priority to holders of Certificates of Preference. These Certificates were issued to households that were displaced by redevelopment activity in the 1960's and early 1970's, specifically in the Western Addition and in Hunters Point. MOH maintains a mailing list of all households in this program. For additional information, see below or call the Certificate hotline at 415-701-5613. If you believe that you are entitled to such a Certificate or if you are a Certificate holder who has not been receiving special mailings, please contact Brooke Barber at 415-701-5560.
Certificate Holder status provides first priority for former SFRA-housing opportunities. Certificate Holders are required to meet any program eligibility requirements for the housing for which they are applying, such as income, household size, homeownership status, etc.
NOTE: A Homebuyer Education Certificate from an approved housing counseling organization is NOT a Certificate of Preference.
In June 2008, the Redevelopment Commission approved a new Home Buyers Assistance Program specifically for Certificate Holders from the Western Addition. This new program will offer silent second loans and matching funds for Individual Development Accounts for home purchases in San Francisco. Please contact MOH at (415) 701-5500 for more information.
LOAN PROGRAM: MOH has also launched the COP Second Loan Program to assist Certificate of Preference holders who were displaced from the Western Addition with the purchase of their first home. Please call 415-701-5500 for more information.
You may find the documents below helpful in learning more about the Certificate of Preference Program. The first file is a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the Certificate Program with answers. The second document is the formal set of Certificate of Preference Program Rules adopted by the Redevelopment Agency Commission.
If you would like someone to contact you about the Certificate Program, please fill out the form below with as much information as possible, including the address from which your family was displaced (if known), parents' names if they were the heads of household, etc. No entity or organization other than MOH is authorized to check eligibility for a Certificate of Preference, or to grant a Certificate of Preference. There are always a large number of requests, and searches are conducted in the order they’re received. Incomplete information, misspelled names, and wrong addresses can delay the results of a search. Please click here to submit an online form.
You may print out, then fill in a Certificate of Preference Search Request form and send it to MOH to request information about your specific situation (instructions appear on the request form).