Getting back on your feet can feel challenging. Luckily, there are many forms of assistance out there to make it a bit easier for you.
Due to the circumstances you might find yourself in, you may be wondering- how can I get section 8 immediately?
Keep reading to learn more about the subject in question.
You must begin by finding your local Public Housing Agency. This is your best place to start. You can find this information on the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development website.
Simply enter your zip code and you will be redirected.to find your local PHA.
Once you have found your local Public Housing Agency, you must determine if you are eligible for a Section 8 voucher.
There are four main factors that the Public Housing Agency will consider:
- The size of one’s family
- The total gross income of the household
- Citizenship status. In regard to citizenship status, undocumented immigrants will not be eligible for assistance.
- Any history of a past eviction. If you have been evicted from government assistance housing for any drug-related criminal activity you are ineligible for assistance for at least 3 years after the eviction.
If you are eligible, you can begin the application process!
Once you have found out that you are eligible, you can begin the actual application.
The application for a voucher is completely free! Depending on your local Public Housing Agency, the application will be available to you online or by mail. You may have to go to your local PHA office in order to fill out an application.
When filling out the application it is crucial to do it properly to avoid any possible mishaps. You may want to seek guidance to ensure you have filled everything in correctly.
The application will ask for some information not only from you but the other members in the household. For instance, the name, birthday, Social Security Number, and gross income of all those applicable will be important.
In addition to the basic information, there will be various other questions. Your housing history and criminal history will need to be listed.
Again, before making your submission, double check the application. Everything must be correct to avoid any delay or mistaken denial.
Rejected or Selected
After you have submitted your application it is reviewed by the housing agency. This will typically take up to 60 days. Every situation varies, though. As a result- the time period will vary. For instance, it may be extended if there is any information that needs a further explanation or investigation.
If your application is approved, you will then be put on a wait list. You must confirm your place on the waiting list for housing. Unfortunately, just because you are on the waiting list does not mean you will be placed in housing quickly. Later on, we will go into further explanation regarding this matter.
If you are rejected it could be due to a few different reasons. One reason your application may be rejected could be because of high demand. Regardless of why, the agency must make the applicant aware of the reasoning for the denial.
The PHA must also notify you that you have the right to an informal hearing or review if denied.
You may not receive your voucher immediately after being approved.
Once you do receive your voucher, the house hunting can begin.
You must find landlords that accept a Section 8 voucher for rent. Typically the government will only cover a percentage of the rent and you will have to cover the rest of the payment.
The housing must pass a physical inspection and adhere to all program requirements.
Once the living arrangements have been secured, the government will pay the voucher directly to the landlord.
When Will I Get My Voucher?
As previously explained, just because you are approved does not mean you will get your voucher. You will be placed on a waiting list.
You could be on the waiting list for almost 2 years before receiving the voucher.
While on the waiting list, it is important to do the best you can with what you have.
You can stay positive by researching section 8 housing that is available. This way, when you do get your voucher you can immediately move forward. There are both apartments and single family homes that are geared towards those who need section 8.
For instance, there are apartment complexes built specifically for housing those who pay rent with assistance from the government.
There are some instances where a person could jump to priority on the list.
The priority list is also known as emergency section 8. The criteria to be put at the top of the list would be in addition to the general requirements of the voucher. Such as low income, limited assets, and other criteria.
Meeting this additional criteria is the only way to speed the process along. It also does not mean that you are guaranteed to get your voucher any sooner. It just helps in the situation.
If you do not meet the other criteria, you will remain on the general wait list.
Let’s take a closer look at what exactly it would take in order to be listed as priority. Some of the instances are as follows:
- Being a veteran or service member
- Having a physical or mental disability
- Being of old age. There are also some situations where a section 8 housing unit will also offer in home assistance.
- A person in need of a new housing arrangement after being in a domestic violence dispute
Those examples are just to mention a few. There are some other instances that could get you on the priority list.
Though obtaining a Section 8 voucher may seem like a grueling process, it is important to remain positive. If you are not able to be placed on the priority wait list, don’t let it discourage you. You will receive your voucher at some point, just not immediately.
Continue to work hard at your source of income. This will ensure you will be able to cover your cost of rent once you do receive the voucher. Having a consistent source of income will help to avoid any confusion regarding your application.
While waiting for your voucher, you can rely on the support of family members or friends if you do not have a proper shelter arrangement.
There are also many services available for those who may be struggling to make ends meet.
Section 8 is a form of government assistance- specifically in regard to housing situations. If you apply for a section 8 voucher and you are accepted, you will be put on a waitlist to receive your assistance.
Due to some circumstances waiting may not be an option. You can apply to be put on the priority wait list if you meet any of the additional requirements. This does not guarantee that you will receive your voucher more quickly. It can help to speed the process along, though.