Section 8 Housing: Do You Qualify?
Are you wondering if you qualify for section 8 housing? Read on for the requirements and qualifications you need to receive section 8 housing vouchers.
Are you having trouble affording housing? If so, you may wonder if you and your family qualify for section 8 housing. This is a voucher program that the government provides for low-income families unable to cover the full expense of their rent.
You need to be aware that only about 25% of people who qualify for this voucher end up receiving it. There are a number of different requirements you will need to meet before being eligible for Section 8 housing vouchers.
Below we outline the key requirements that would qualify you for this voucher program.
Income Requirements for Section 8 Housing
The income requirements for the voucher program vary from place to place. However, you will need to make less than 50% of the median income in your neighborhood.
This has to be an entire household income not just one out of two parents or married individuals. You will also need to consider the number of people in your family living with you.
The more children in the family, the more the income you can make while still being eligible for Section 8 housing.
For example, in Orange County, California, the household income for a family of three can be $33,150 while a family of 6 can have a household income as high as $42,750.
Local housing agencies give preference to extremely low-income families. These include those making 30% of the median income in the area.
Before applyingfor the housing voucher program, make sure that your income meets the requirements of your neighborhood.
Steps Toward Eligibility for the Voucher Program
The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and local agencies look at several other factors that can determine whether or not you are eligible for Section 8 housing vouchers.
A person's homelessness status as well as their welfare-to-work program participation are also factors in determining whether or not they are eligible.
A few other things that matter include the age of the applicant and whether he or she is a veteran or a widow/widower. People aged 62 and older have a greater chance of qualifying for the housing voucher program.
People who work more than 42 hours per week and still have a household income that qualifies them for the program may have a higher chance for eligibility and receiving assistance.
Individuals who are disabled also have a larger chance for getting into the program.
Those that reside in a shelter as well as individuals with children are also more likely to be eligible for Section 8 housing.
US Citizenship or Legal Resident
You will need to be a US citizen or a certain legal immigrant in order to receive these benefits. Only certain permanent residents are eligible.
If you are on a travel visa, work visa or a student visa, you will not be eligible for housing assistance. Only permanent residence and asylum-seekers along with US citizens are eligible for the program.
Some exceptions can be made by the Attorney General. The majority of the time, you need to be a US citizen or legal resident.
Unless you are disabled, you are required to have stable and regular employment. You will be required to have a minimum income.
Despite employment, you must belong to a low-income family. Your family cannot have a household income more than 50% of the median income in your location. The income will vary based on your neighborhood.
Can't Own Property
Another key requirement is that no one in your family including you can own any property in order to be eligible for the housing voucher program.
No one in your family can own residential or commercial real estate. Otherwise, you wouldn't need any assistance to afford housing.
You and your family need to complete the housing counseling program and all of its subsequent requirements. You need to attend counseling before you can be eligible for the program.
You also need to comply with the mandates of the Public Housing Agency. These steps will bring you closer to being qualified for the housing vouchers.
Pass a Criminal Background Check
You and everyone in your family needs to pass a criminal background check in order to be eligible for the program. Every applicant and family member will have to go through this background check.
Nearly every person convicted of a crime is ineligible for Section 8 housing. No one in your family can be using illegal drugs. They also can't have a history of past housing eviction for committing a crime or violation.
Provide Proof of ID and Age
You need to present a proof of identification. This is usually done in the form of a social security card. However, some local agencies may be able to use another form of ID.
Your birth certificate or passport may also be an eligible form of identification. Other types of identification, like a license, will not be good enough to confirm who you are. If you have lost your social security card, you can apply to get a new one.
The primary applicant must also prove that they are at least 18 years of age. Parents older than 18 who have children are also eligible to apply.
There are also some exceptions to the rule. Certain people experiencing an emergency situation may be eligible for the housing vouchers.
For example, in New York City, some victims of domestic abuse as well as witnesses to crimes may be eligible for this assistance.
So be sure to find out from your local housing agency if your particular emergency or bad situation could qualify you for government housing assistance. If you do not meet one of the major requirements above, you will likely not be able to receive housing assistance.
We hope this information has helped you learn whether or not you may be eligible for government housing assistance.
Do you have any questions about how to apply for section 8 housing? Are you looking for another form of housing? No matter what you need, you can always contact us here.
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