As an initiative taken up by the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) department, the Section 8 Assistance program seeks to give housing choice vouchers to those who are eligible based on the following requirements: citizenship, eviction history, income level, and family status. We are going to show you criteria applicants are assessed based so that you can understand more about the process and take advantage of this wonderful benefit:
Immigration and citizenship status: US citizens or those who have the status as legal immigrants in the United States are eligible to receive assistance vouchers. If you are not a citizen of the United States, that is not an issue because you could still apply you still may qualify for section 8 vouchers if you are one of the following: (1) lawful permanent residents (i.e., green card holders), (2) registry immigrants, (3) victims of human trafficking, (4) refugees/asylum seekers, (5) conditional entrants, (6) parolees. You can find out more here
Eviction History: Regarding evictions, you will not be eligible for Section 8 Assistance if you have had to face eviction for activity or criminal charges relating to illegal narcotics or you have previously been charged for the production of the methamphetamines in a low-income project-assisted housing property/facility. It’s important to note that your application will definitely not be considered if you are a registered sex offender.
Family Status Requirement: Family status is one of the main factors that will determine whether you would qualify for Section 8 Assistance or not, and these requirements are not only determined by HUD, but the local Public Housing Authority also plays a role in determining these requirements. Family status is generally determined based on the following considerations: (1) Does the applicant have children/dependents? (2) Does any family member have a disability (mental or physical)? (3) Has the applicant experience forced displacement (either through federally recognized natural disasters or an evacuation due to government action), (4) Does the applicant have children?
Income Level Requirement: Income level is one of the most important factors that determine whether an individual qualifies for Section 8 Assistance as well as how much that individual would get. As a program, Section 8 Assistance is geared towards low-income communities, which means that eligibility and the amount of relief that an individual receives is determined based on whether that individual’s income level falls below a certain amount. In this system, applicants are classified into three main groups based on income for assessment purposes, which includes “low income”, “very low income”, “extremely low Income”. It goes without saying that priority is given to those that all fall into the “extremely low income” category, since they are the ones who are the most in need. Income in relation to family size is also variable that is taken into consideration during the assessment process (assuming that a single family can have anywhere between one and eight members). For example, typically families of average size (e.g., a family of four) who are classified as “extremely low-income” would make around $15,000 annually, whereas an eight-member family that makes only $30,000 would also fall into the same category because of the family’s size. You can use the HUD website’s online tool to see where you fall.
Tips for the Application:
What to include in Your Application:
The ideal of list of documents that should be included in your application may vary from state to state, but the standard items that should be incorporated in your file (if you are applying for Section 8 assistance or any other housing program) are as follows: (1) Society Security Number, (2) Evidence of citizenship/immigration papers (proof of residence should be included as well), (3) Birth certificates, (4) proof of income (pay stubs of 3-6 months), (5) credit scores, (6) tax documents, (6) bank statements, (7) list of social welfare benefits you get (SSI, food stamps, etc.), (8) list of places you’ve lived in for the previous five years.
Once You’re on the Waiting List
Once you have applied, you will be put on the waiting list. Here is how you can get the most out of your time:
- Apply to as many waiting lists as possible.
- Make sure your current mailing address is dependable.
- Do not fall for scams asking you to pay money to move up the waiting lists. It won’t help you.
- If you have a doctor’s note which indicates you have a disability or a medical condition which is getting worse because of where you are living, they can speed up the process of your request being answered.