The Federal Housing Choice Voucher Program, also known as Section 8, subsidizes low-income applicants' rent. If you are looking to apply for Section 8 assistance, the easiest way to accomplish this would be to go online and apply. While many cities offer the option to apply for Section 8 housing via their websites, others may offer the application online for you to print and mail in. If your city doesn't offer Section 8, or is currently closed to applicants, you may be able to seek low-income housing options through another type of program.
Find out whether your chosen cities allow you to apply for Section 8 directly from their website. If you do not have this information, you will just have to visit each individual site to see if it is offered. City and government websites typically end in ".gov" and ".org," but you can usually find an adeqaute website by typing in your city name and "Section 8" into the search engine.
Look for department options on the city's website such as “Housing” or “Family Services” or “Family Assistance.” If you searched directly for Section 8 or housing information, read the information pertaining to the program if you are not familiar with it and locate their application or forms information. If the city is not currently accepting applications, this information will be available and in bold letters. The page will tell you what their current application status is. For example, if you cannot apply for Section 8 currently, it may read something like, "Section 8 wait list is closed."
Fill the application out completely and truthfully and submit it as requested. For cities that do not accept application submissions online, you will have to print out the form, fill it in and mail it to the address provided either on the form or on the website.
Mail each application to the proper address so that there is no delay in its delivery. Because of the sensitive information contained in the applications, it is advisable that you drop them off at your local post office and get proof or certification of mailing. If this is not possible, than make sure it is securely dropped into a USPS mailbox for pickup.
Do nothing further unless something in your household changes, such as the number of family members or your income. Most Section 8 sites will allow you to make these types of changes via an online form as well. If you had to print and mail your application, you may receive a letter in the mail confirming the receipt of your application.
- Although your qualifications may differ if you do not work or reside in a particular city, it is still a good idea to apply in multiple locations in the event that you are accepted in one city faster than another. In most cases, after 12 months you can transfer your voucher to a different city.
- Be sure to update your information promptly with any housing department that you have applied to. If you move and they mail a letter to you, they can remove you from their list if you do not reply. Income updates are important, as it makes a difference in where you end up on the waiting list.