This research looks at the spatial and social impacts of home-based work on the function and design of low-income housing schemesContext and Background: While attention has been paid to the shelter aspects of housing, less importance has been paid to the economic aspects of housing and to the dwelling as a site for work. This has resulted in the planning of urban neighbourhoods that lack the necessary spatial linkages to support income-generating activities and economic sustainability in low-income housing schemes. Methodology: Methodological procedures consisted of post-occupancy evaluation of five low income housing schemes comprised of different dwelling types, located in the metropolitan region of Porto Alegre, Brazil. Data was collected through questionnaires, interviews, observations and physical measurements Findings and Conclusions: The findings show that part of household income generation originate from entrepreneurial activities carried out in the dwelling, resulting in a number of physical modifications in the dwelling as well as the creative usage of space. The type and quantity of modifications taking place are related to the degree of spatial flexibility, according to each dwelling type. Dwelling location within the urban area and neighbourhood, and its linkages to public infrastructure impact the characteristics of home-based work and the usage of the dwelling for income generation. The relationships investigated highlight the important role provision and adequacy of income generating activities play on performance evaluation and economic sustainability of low-income housing schemes. Applicability to the field: The paper is based on results of a comprehensive research carried out with the purpose of gathering feedback information to provide design guidelines for future social housing production and broaden policy makers' knowledge to plan for housing to meet the diverse income generation needs of low-income households.