Do You Qualify For a Housing Choice Voucher? Find Out Today
(DailyDig.com) – Section 8 housing is an arrangement that allows low-income families, including the elderly and disabled, to live in a residence of their choosing that meets the minimum safety and sanitation requirements of the program. Applying for the housing choice voucher will place applicants on a waiting list in their local area. Certain eligibility requirements must be met to participate in this housing program.
Are You Eligible for a Housing Choice Voucher?
The main eligibility factor that will be determined on the housing voucher application will be related to income and family size. The local PHA (public housing agency) will apply calculations based on the median income for individuals and families. On the application, the applicant will need to provide their gross income and family size. As a rule, to be eligible for this voucher, income must not exceed 50% of the median income for the PHA county.
You can only be considered eligible for this voucher if you are a US citizen, unless you are a non-citizen with eligible immigration status. People who generally qualify for these programs include the elderly, disabled, and families with low income and who may already be on public assistance programs.
How Does the Housing Voucher Work?
This housing choice voucher works as an agreement between the applicant, the landlord of the housing property, and the federal government. Applicants are allowed to search for suitable housing in their desired location, including units in subsidized housing projects, single-family homes, apartments, and townhomes. Once housing is found, the applicant should then discuss the housing voucher with the landlord or property owner.
If the landlord agrees to use the housing voucher, then the applicant can finalize arrangements with the PHA for part of the monthly rental fees for the property to be paid by the voucher. The voucher is paid directly to the landlord each month and the applicant is responsible for any difference in the rent. This program can make housing affordable in areas where rent is very high.
What Are Inspection Standards?
Any housing the applicant wants to use the voucher for must pass the PHA inspection standards, which are set by HUD. The housing voucher has quality standards such as health and safety concerns related to lead-based paint, mold, and obvious structural risks in the home.
The most common deficiencies found during inspections include damaged doors or door locks, broken appliances, leaking pipes and faucets, damaged walls, uncovered outlets, and no emergency exits in the building. Ensure these basic deficiencies are corrected before an inspection so the voucher will be approved.
How to Apply for Section 8
Applying for this housing voucher should be done through your local PHA office. To find the office or website of the local public housing agency, visit the HUD website and search by locality. Once on the appropriate PHA website, applicants can search for the application and specific eligibility requirements related to income for their county or state, fill in the application, and then apply directly to their local PHA office.
The housing choice voucher program allows the government to assist those in need by paying a landlord directly for a portion of monthly rent. The program leaves individuals and families with the freedom to find appropriate rental properties that pass inspection standards and are both suitable and safe for their families.
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