Section 8 Housing: A Detailed Overview

The Section 8 Project-Based Rental Assistance (PBRA) program provides affordable apartment communities that are owned by private landlords with a rental subsidy. The taxpayer-funded subsidy helps low-income tenants pay their rent.

Section 8 Housing

Residents of the Total Tenant Payment (TTP) program pay either a flat rate or a rent-to-income ratio, which is calculated by dividing the tenant’s gross income by the tenant payment.

  1. 0% of their monthly income (gross income minus exclusions)
  2. 30% of their monthly adjusted income (gross income minus exclusions and deductions)
  3. A minimum rent of $25.

Section 8 of the United States Housing Act of 1937 (Section 8) is a federal program that provides rental assistance to low-income families, often called Section 8.

Housing and Community Development Act of 1978

The Housing Choice Voucher Program was created by the Housing and Community development Act of 1978. This program helps poor people get affordable housing. Families must be eligible for welfare benefits to qualify for the voucher program.

Legislative history

  • Introduced in the Senate as S. 3066 by John Sparkman (DAL) on February 27, 1974
  • Committee consideration by Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, House Banking and Currency
  • Passed the Senate on March 11, 1974 (76-11)
  • Passed the House on June 20, 1974 (351-25, in lieu of H.R. 15361)
  • Reported by the joint conference committee on August 12, 1974; agreed to by the Senate on August 13, 1974 (84-0) and by the House on August 15, 1974 (377-21)
  • Signed into law by President Gerald R. Ford on August 22, 1974 

What Is Section 8 Housing?

Section 8 housing is a private sector subsidized housing program for eligible low and moderate-income families. Section 8 helps recipients to cover the difference between what a landlord demands rent and what your family can afford to pay.

If you are looking for affordable housing choices, then section 8 can provide this service to you. This voucher program provides low-Income limits families with needed assistance in paying rent. 

Common housing choice voucher eligibility requirements require that applicants be at or below 80 percent of area median income levels or within the 50 states, qualify as elderly, disabled, or as a family with children. 

While a large number of landlords participate in the Section 8 program, there are some who do not accept vouchers, so an exhaustive search is necessary to determine eligibility.

Section 8 Housing Guide Detailed Information

  1. Who is Eligible for Section 8 Housing?
    • Elderly
    • Disabled
    • Family with Children
  2. Section 8 Housing Eligibility Requirements
    • family size
    • citizenship status
    • financial abuse
  3. Who Qualifies for Section 8 Housing?
    • Elderly People
    • Disabled People
    • Family with Children
    • Single Mothers Or Father
    • People Who Are Homeless
  4. How to Qualify for Section 8 Housing
    • Income limits
    • Family size
    • Immigration status
    • Criminal record
    • History of evictions
    • Credit history
  5. Tips Get Section 8 Application Approved Fast
    • When do you apply for Section 8 housing?
    • Reasons Why You’ve Just Been Denied Section 8 application
    • Learn How and where to apply for Section 8 housing To Get Approved Fast
    • What happens after you apply for Section 8 housing
  6. How to get section 8 immediately?
    • Get in touch with your public housing agency’s administrator
    • Complete your paperwork
    • Gather all the necessary documents
Section 8 Housing Guide

Section 8 is part of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCVP), which assists more than two million eligible low-income families in the United States, including Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, with rental assistance. The HCVP allows tenants to choose their own rental housing and is the largest low-income housing assistance program administered by HUD and the federal government.

History – Us Housing

Federal housing assistance programs started during the great depression. In the 1960s, the federal government increased the production of low-cost housing and helped families pay their rent. The Section 236 Leased Housing program amended the US Housing Act.

This subsidy was not a pure housing aid program. Authorities selected eligible families from their waitlist, placed them into housing from a master list, and determined the actual rent they would have to pay. Housing authorities signed a lease with the private landlords and paid the difference between the tenant’s rent and the market rate.

In the agreement with private landlords, housing authorities agreed to do regular building maintenance and leasing duties for Section 236 tenants, review the tenant’s adjusted income for program eligibility and calculate income for rent.

The government subsidizes poor families by giving them free or cheap apartments. This program helps low-income families get decent homes.

The Section 8 program initially had 3 subprograms: New Construction, Substantial rehabilitation, and Existing Housing Certificates. The Moderate Rehabilitation program was added in 1978, and the additional housing vouchers program in 1983. The Project-Based Certificate program was added in 1991. The number of units a local housing authority could subsidize under its Section8 programs is determined by congressional funding. Some Section 8 programs were phased out and new ones were created but congress always renews existing subsidies.

The 2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act was signed into law on December 26, 2007. It allocates $75 million funding for HUD-VASH vouchers. The program combines housing assistance for homeless veterans with VA services.


  • Tenants must pay 30% of their income for Section 8 housing, but they are allowed to choose any place they want to live. Public housing agencies reserve 20% of their vouchers as project-based vouchers, and tenants may move into these units if they wish.
  • There is an asset test in addition to earned monthly income. Over $2,000, HUD adds income even if the section 8 tenant doesn’t receive any interest income from a bank account. HUD sets a standard Passbook Savings Rate to calculate the imputed interest income from the asset.
  • Increasing the amount of a tenant’s total income increases the amount of imputed income for rent from assets. This affects how much the PHA pays the landlord. The FMRs are amounts (rents + utilities) for medium-size apartments in a particular community.

In San Francisco, the rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,522 per month. In New York, the same apartment costs $1,280 per month. Other cities’ rents are lower. Landlords cannot raise rents above what is reasonable. Tenants must pay reasonable rent within the terms of the lease agreement.

Landlords who refuse to rent to tenants because they are Section 8 recipients are breaking the law. Fair housing laws require landlords to accept Section 8 tenants. Refusing to do so could lead to fines or jail time.

Landlords should not discriminate against Section 8 tenants. They should not advertise “no section 8“. They should not evict tenants because they do not want to rent to them.

Section 8 Applicants

Applicants may apply for a section 8 housing voucher at any County or City Housing Authority Office in their State. Residents of a particular area who receives a voucher from the jurisdiction they live in may use the voucher anywhere else in the country, but Non-Residents of the jurisdiction must live within the jurisdiction for 12 months before they may move to another area.

Priority for vouchers is often reserved for those who reside in the Service Area of that Housing Authority. Many Localities use a lottery system to award vouchers, with priority sometimes given to local residents, the disabled, and the elderly. the waiting list for Section 8 vouchers is often very long, with waits of 3-6 years to obtain housing vouchers. 

Some localities use a “Lottery” system, where there can be up to 100,000 applicants for only 10,000 spots on a list, with spots being awarded based on a weighted or non-weighting lottery, with priority sometimes given to local residents, the disabled & the elderly.

How to Apply for Section 8 Housing?

Section 8 housing can be a very helpful option for individuals or families that have a hard time finding affordable places to live. However, many people don’t know how to go about applying for section 8 housing, or they are unsure of the steps they need to take – especially if they have never applied before.

  • In order to make sure that you are able to get the right kind of assistance, it is important to have all of the right information upfront.

The following guide will help you understand how to apply for Section 8 housing. But if you want to Learn How to apply for Section 8 housing To Get Approved Fast so read this here we describe the best ways to get approval fast in detail.

  • To apply for section 8 housing, you must first find a local public housing agency.
  • You will get a list of questions to answer about your current situation.
  • The section 8 application process is completely free and most agencies do not require you to have an appointment.
  • Once you have submitted your application, the housing authority will determine your eligibility based on the information that you provided.
  • If you are found eligible, your name will be placed on the waiting list.
  • If you want to check on the status of your application, contact your Public Housing Authority.

This How to Apply for Section 8 Housing article will cover details you need to know well before applying

  • When you apply for Section 8 housing, 
  • what happens next? Most people have never applied for Section 8 housing. So how does the application process work? What happens after you apply for Section 8 housing? This article will answer these questions and more.

What to Expect After You Apply for Section 8 Housing?

You have done your research and know that you can benefit from Section 8 housing. You have filled out the application, gathered all of the documents requested, and are now waiting to hear back from the housing authority. Here is what to expect after you apply for section 8 housing.

The housing market is a competitive one, especially for renters looking for affordable housing. Section 8 housing is only available to low-income tenants, and the application process can be lengthy and complicated. To help you better understand the Section 8 housing application process, Read our detailed article on the application process.

Section 8 Waiting List

The waitlist is determined by the date and time that the applications are received. This means that if many people applied at once,

  • it could take several months before you receive any kind of notification regarding your status.

The wait times vary depending on where you reside and how many people are applying for assistance in any given area.

  • Some cities have a much longer wait time than others. It’s important to be patient during this time as there is no way to bypass the waitlist or expedite it in any way.

When you have reached the top of the waiting list,

  • The housing authority will send you a letter informing you that it is time to begin searching for a home that accepts Section 8 vouchers.

Can You Get Section 8 With a Felony?

eligible immigration status, or who have been convicted of a felony.

The bill also would require the state to create an identification card for undocumented immigrants that could be used in public services and other transactions. The measure is similar to one passed by the Legislature last year

What States Have the Section 8 Program?

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) uses data to determine which states have the Section 8 program.

  • HUD shows that in FY 2015, more than 70,000 households in Florida received Section 8 assistance.
  • Texas had the second-most households with Section 8 vouchers at over 55,500. Section 8 is a rental assistance program that helps families pay their rent.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) created the program to help very low-income people.

How Long Does It Take To Get Approved for Section 8?

Applying for Section 8 takes time, patience, and perseverance. The application process can be lengthy, with lots of paperwork and requirements. How long it takes to get approved for section 8 depends on many factors, as each applicant’s situation is different.

As Our Research

The approval process for section 8 differs from place to place. As a rule, the average time it takes to get approved for section 8 is about 4-6 months. However, some states and cities have longer waits than others.

  • If you are looking to apply for section 8 in Los Angeles, it will likely take about 6 months for approval.
  • If you are looking to apply for section 8 in Kansas City, the wait time is typically shorter at about 4 months.

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the average processing time for section 8 is from 42 to 60 days, depending on state agency processing times. The application process is fairly simple, but it can take some time to complete.

However, once you submit your application, you will receive a notice in the mail letting you know that it has been received and accepted.

Applications can be approved more quickly if the applicant has a steady stream of income and/or a verifiable rental history.

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