Having a place to call their own has always been part of the American dream. However, economic situations often prevent that from happening. With this, Section 8 of the Housing Act of 1937 aims to help low income families to rent or purchase homes for themselves and their families. Of course, this benefit is not for everyone, and there are various steps before you can take advantage of this provision.
How does it work?
At its core, Section 8 housing helps eligible individuals with their housing rentals. They will be provided with vouchers and the difference between the voucher value and the rent will be shouldered by the tenant himself. Contracts are usually under a year to year basis, and the landlord has the option to renew the contract once the year has ended. Tenants are also required to pay the remaining value on time, and that the rented house should be maintained properly.
Who are qualified?
In order to be eligible for Section 8 housing, a family must have a yearly income that is below 50% of the median income. This will depend on both the state where you live in as well as on how many members there are in your family. Aside from these, those who are nearing or within retirement age, homeless, a widow or widower, disabled, or have served in the U.S. Armed Forces also have a greater chance for having their request for housing assistance approved.
How to apply?
Steps for application for a Section 8 housing voucher can be found at the HUD website. You will be redirected to a local housing agency in your area where you will have to fill out a few forms and take a few interviews before your application would be approved. It is important to note that you should not actually have to pay for Section 8 housing. You should avoid or even report anyone who is asking you for money to process your documents for application as they are committing fraud.
Can Section 8 housing be revoked?
Any changes in income must be reported to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the entity in charge of handling Section 8 housing. As your income increases, so will the value of your vouchers decrease. Once your combined family income reaches 80% of the median income in your area, then your benefits under Section 8 may be stopped altogether.