U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

  • Section 3 Business


  • Certification Designation: Section 3 Business
  • Race Conscious: No 
  • Gender Conscious: No
  • Re-Certification: Annual
  • Graduation: None
  • Approval Timeline: Varies (est. 30 Days) 
  • Cost: Free
  • Website: www.hud.gov

Overview (Download PDF)

The purpose of section 3 Business Certification program is to ensure that recipients of certain HUD financial assistance direct economic opportunities to Section 3 residents and Section 3 business concerns. Economic opportunities include, but are not limited to, employment, apprenticeships, job training, contracts and subcontracting opportunities. HUD financial assistance covered under the Section 3 provision includes development assistance, operational assistance and modernization assistance (e.g., Community Development Block Grants).  


A business may qualify as a Section 3 business concern if:

  • The business is 51% or more owned by Section 3 resident; or
  • HUD Youthbuild Programs; or
  • The business employs Section 3 residents for at least 30% of its full-time, permanent staff; or
  • The business provides evidence of a commitment to subcontract to Section 3 business concerns, 25% or more of the dollar amount of the awarded contract.
HUD Section 3 Resident (Definition)
  • Low income is defined as 80% or below the median income of that area;
  • Very low income is defined as 50% or below the median income of that area; or
  • Extremely low income is defined as 30% or below the median income of that area.

Find the 2013 HUD Income Limits for Louisiana Parishes and Metro Areas

Certification Process

  1. Complete the HUD Section 3 Business application.
  2. Orleans Parish businesses: Submit the application to the Housing Authority of New Orleans. 
  3. All other applicants: Contact the nearest HUD field office to determine where to submit your application. 

The HUD Section 3 Business Concern Application

HUD Field Office contact information is included in the PDF Overview above.