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Whether you live in Section 8 housing or a non-subsidized apartment or town home, you need to follow many important rules to maintain a positive relationship with your landlord.
These rules typically pertain to noise, pets, cleanliness and complying with the terms of your lease. If you fail to follow these rules, your landlord may evict you from the property, increase your rent or take legal action.
However, rules for Section 8 rentals are slightly different, as failure to follow these requirements could disqualify you from receiving Housing Choice Vouchers and participating in other government assistance programs.
To maintain good standing in the Housing Choice Voucher Program, it is important to familiarize yourself with the various rules and regulations you must follow, such as the number of household members you can live with in a single Section 8 property.
When completing your Section 8 application, you must list each additional household member who plans to live with you, as the size of your family will affect your eligibility, voucher amount and the type of the rental unit you qualify for.
To learn more about these rules, review the information below.
When you live in a Section 8 rental, you must follow your landlord’s rules as well as the requirements of your local Public Housing Authority (PHA), or you could be disqualified from participating in the Section 8 program or receiving other types of rental assistance through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
To apply for Section 8 rentals through your local PHA, you and your other household members must also follow several important housing rules, or you could face severe consequences such as imprisonment and costly fines.
If you knowingly provide false or misleading information on your application for rental assistance, you will be committing fraud.
When applying for Section 8 rental housing assistance through your local PHA, for instance, you must include the names and personal details of everyone who plans to live in the unit with you, as these additional household members will affect your Section 8 eligibility, income limit and benefit amount.
You must also include the following individuals on your application, even if they will not permanently reside in the rental unit with you:
While your Section 8 housing application must include the names and personal details of each family member or everyone who plans to live in the rental property with you, several types of household members will not affect your income limits for program eligibility.
These household members include live-in aides, guests, foster children and foster adults.
Whether you complete a Section 8 housing application online application, or you apply for rental assistance in person or by mail, it is important to gather several pieces of information about you and your other household members before getting started.
When completing your application, you must be able to provide accurate information about your:
To apply for Section 8 rental assistance, you must contact your local PHA to begin the application process. As part of the application process, you must provide the above information as well as the names and Social Security Numbers (SSNs) of any additional household members.
PHAs can take a long time to decipher whether you and your household are eligible. If you want to find out if you fall with the income bracket for your area, you may use the calculators below to help you.
To remain on the Section 8 housing list, you must only provide truthful information on your application for rental assistance. If you knowingly provide false or misleading information, you could face eviction from your rental property, fines of up to $10,000 and as many as five years in prison.
Additional consequences may include:
Moreover, it is important to protect yourself from housing assistance scams when applying for Section 8 vouchers.
To protect yourself from becoming the victim of a housing scam, do not pay money to move up on the waiting list, and do not hire another individual or company to apply for benefits on your behalf.
After submitting your Section 8 housing application to your local PHA and moving to the top of the waiting list, you must select a reasonable rental unit that meets basic safety and security standards.
Additionally, your local PHA must inspect the property before approving it. In some cases, you may need to pay a security deposit as well, but specific requirements vary by PHA and landlord.
Before moving into your Section 8 rental, you must sign a lease of at least one year. After your first year of renting the property, your landlord may allow you to rent the unit on a month-to-month basis.
As part of your leasing agreement, you must agree to keep the rental property in good condition, pay your rent on time and report any changes in your household income as soon as these changes occur.
Depending on the rules and requirements set forth by your landlord and local PHA, you may need to comply with additional terms as well.