A boarder is an individual (or a group of individuals) who resides with a household
and pays “reasonable compensation” for lodging and meals. The household that provides
board must request the boarder’s participation in its SNAP application.
NOTE: Foster care individuals placed in the home of relatives or other families by a federal,
state, or local governmental foster care program are considered boarders and cannot
participate in SNAP independently of the household providing the foster care services.
However, foster care individuals may participate (along with their spouse or children
who live with them) as members of the household providing the foster care, but only
at the request of the household that provides the foster care services.
a. What is reasonable compensation
Under SNAP guidelines, each boarder is usually considered a separate household as
long as any other boarders are not family members (as defined in SI 01801.060A.3. in this subsection).
Boarders who are related have their payments combined to determine if their payments
are “reasonable compensation” based on household size.
NOTE: SNAP uses only the amount of board paid for meals to determine reasonable compensation.
b. When a boarder does not pay reasonable compensation
If a boarder does not pay reasonable compensation, he or she is considered to be a
member of the household.
c. Household requests boarder’s participation in the SNAP application
When a household requests a boarder’s participation in its SNAP application, and the
boarder pays reasonable compensation, the boarder’s income is included with the household’s
income for SNAP purposes.
d. Household does not request boarder’s participation in the SNAP application
If the household does not request the boarder’s participation in its SNAP application,
and the boarder pays reasonable compensation, the boarder’s payments to the household
are considered self-employment income for the household.