4 Common Mistakes People Make When Applying for Section 8 Housing

1. They Don’t Make Sure They Qualify Before Starting the Application Process

There are important factors which directly impact your ability to be awarded Section 8 housing assistance. Most of them are related to the financial status of you and your household. Here are the initial qualifications:

– You’ve got to be either a United States citizen, or an otherwise qualified resident with a legal immigration status such as non-resident alien.
– The combined household income must fall below 50% of the median household income of the locality. Three out of every four Section 8 recipients actually fall below 30% of the local median household income.

There may be additional qualifications instituted by the local or state government. To learn whether such restrictions exist in your area, contact your local Public Housing Authority (PHA) office.



2. They Don’t Verify Their Claims

Competition for housing assistance is tough. You won’t necessarily receive Section 8 funding just because you claim to be a low-income household. Pay stubs, income tax forms, and bank account information may be necessary to prove that you are actually in need.

To apply for a voucher that can be applied towards rent, you’ll also need documentation from your landlord about your unit’s monthly cost. Section 8 assistance isn’t like a blank check. The officer will need numbers and hard data or else you’re unlikely to receive any help at all.

3. They Don’t Do Their Homework

Section 8 assistance is awarded through a PHA voucher program, but not all vouchers are the same. You have to research the different vouchers and understand what your family’s specific situation requires. The main difference is that some vouchers are used by renters and others are used by homebuyers.

Don’t think that Section 8 assistance automatically makes you eligible to purchase a home. Consult a financial advisor if you think buying a home is a possibility. A local community assistance office can probably connect you with a free financial advisor who can help you evaluate your situation.



4. They Don’t Apply Seriously

The application process for Section 8 assistance is obviously important. Don’t submit your application until you’ve carefully completed it, reviewed it for errors and maybe even allowed someone else to double check it. A local PHA office can provide the forms to you. Online alternatives may be available, so if you’re comfortable with the internet, perhaps that would be a helpful option.

If you have questions about a form or are unclear about the terminology used on the form, don’t guess! Employees of the local PHA can help you ensure that your application is filled out completely and accurately.

In conclusion, make sure you are well-prepared before you submit your application. Being well-prepared can save you lots of time and headaches, and ensure that the application process will go as smooth as possible!