The Housing Voucher Program, also known as Section 8 housing, is a government assistance program that provides households and individuals obtain affordable housing.
There are also other government grants and resources that help reduce monthly expenses for qualifying applicants.
Each government assistance program has unique eligibility requirements. If you are applying for Section 8 housing, it is crucial to understand the program.
Reviewing other resources available to you can be helpful, especially if you are put on a waiting list for the Section 8 program. Depending on where you live, the waiting lists are known to be long. It may take weeks, months or even years just to begin receiving the benefits.
Overview of Section 8
The Housing Voucher Program aids low-income households with acquiring affordable housing or reducing housing costs. The program also helps qualifying elderly and disabled persons obtain a home.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) runs the program they require the public housing agencies (PHAs) to provide the participants with safe and sanitary housing. The PHAs receive the funds from HUD so they can administer the vouchers.
Once the housing voucher has been distributed, the household is responsible for obtaining a rental unit that meets the requirements. The selection can be the current home of the household, so long as it meets HUD requirements.
On behalf of the participating family, the housing vouchers are paid to the landlords of the rental property. Afterward, the family will pay for the difference.
Eligibility for the housing voucher will be determined mainly by income limit and household size. There are other factors such as citizenship status and assets. You must provide this information as well as acceptable proof of this information, to your local PHA. Methods for completing the application are online, via mail or in person, however, this can vary depending on the area you live in.
Once you apply, you may be placed on the waiting list. The length of time you are on the waiting list can depend on the resources available in the area and the local preferences of the PHA. Applicants who meet the local preferences will receive priority when it is time to receive benefits. A PHA may place priority over a household that is:
- Living in substandard housing.
- Paying more than 50 percent of their income in rent.
- Involuntarily displaced.
Learn About Credit Scores and Credit Reports
Lenders of all types will evaluate your credit score to know whether you are a risky or safe client. There are many factors that can determine your credit score:
- Your payment history, such as time of bill payments.
- Your credit utilization ratio, or the amount of money you owe compared to credit limits.
- Hard inquiries on your credit report.
- The amount of time you have had open accounts.
- The types of credit accounts you have.
You are more likely to be approved for a line of credit and be offered lower interest rates if your credit score is higher. Your credit score will reflect a condensed version of your entire credit report. A credit report provides a more comprehensive look at your credit and debt information. The three major credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion – compile the credit information that is reported to them.
Every year, you are entitled to one free credit report from each credit bureau. In addition to a free report, you can use various free or low-cost credit reporting websites to view your score, such as Credit Karma or Nerd Wallet. A credit history report will always include your credit score.
Now that you have our guide, you have plenty of information compiled together to help you learn more about the programs that may be available to you. Our professionals will give this information to you over the course of a few days, so it is crucial to check your inbox. Meanwhile, you may revise the other resources to help reduce your monthly costs and expand your options in terms of affordable health care and housing.
Find Helpful Resources for Monitoring Credit
Learn About Services Available at a Reduced Price
As a government assistance beneficiary, you may be eligible for more affordable services. If you want cheap internet and cable, check with your local providers to compare prices on services. Some providers work with Lifeline, a federal program created to help low-income households reduce their phone and internet bills. It is worth asking if your provider works with this program to take advantage of the low cost.
Affordable cable is possible. However, you must carefully review the service packages to find the right one for you. Cheap car insurance may also be available. Depending on the car you drive and if your vehicle is leased, you may obtain coverage higher than the state minimum.
Find Out About Companies with Subsidized Services
Aside from subsidized housing, the government provides programs that help with utility costs. The companies below work with the government to provide services at a reduce price.
- SafeLink Wireless Phone Services
- Cox Low-Cost Internet
- USAA Car Insurance for Low-Income Military Service Members
Learn About Grants from the Government
These grants are provided to federal and state departments as well as outreach programs so they may provide financial assistance to the low-income households of the community. Every program will have its own requirements for eligibility but can provide several kinds of benefits to households in need.
These programs may provide assistance for food, shelter, health insurance and other monthly expenses. Some of the federal programs include the following:
- The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
- The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
If you need financial assistance and are the member of a low-income family, federal programs can provide other types of assistance. You may contact the local Department of Health and Human Services and local public housing agency (PHA) for more information on these programs.
Discover How to Obtain Cheap Health Insurance
Completing an application on HealthCare.gov can provide you with information on inexpensive health insurance options. There are many factors taken into consideration such as income and living area. If your household makes a low income, then you may qualify for Medicaid.
This is a government assistance program that provides health insurance to millions of Americans each year. The eligibility requirements for Medicaid are typically income-based, but each state will have its own requirements.
There is a way to find out if you can afford marketplace insurance. This subsidy calculator will provide with a list of plans you can afford in exchange for some financial details, such as annual income. The calculator will tell you the estimated financial help you will receive and the cost for different levels of coverage.
About Loans from HUD
HUD homes allow homebuyers to buy a home at a lower price. HUD provides mortgage loans that normally less than their market value. HUD loans and applications are provided through a lender. You may qualify for other government loan programs like FHA loans, USDA loans or VA loans.