Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8)
Information for Landlords
Thank you for your interest in the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program. The success of the program depends on our agency’s ability to contract with property owners and managers who have safe, decent and sanitary rental housing units. Many low-income families in the community rely on property owners such as you, who are willing to participate in the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program. The subsidy that comes with the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program helps families to rent in many different neighborhoods. Participating families include; elderly persons, persons with disabilities and working families who do not earn enough to keep pace with the rising rental housing costs.
Please request an informational packet, which will provide a brief overview of the program and an excerpt of the HUD Inspection form, which will define inspection requirements. We welcome your participation as a property owner or manager and look forward to working with you as we strive to maintain a successful program. Should you decide to participate in the program and have an available property, you may request the “Available Unit” form and return it to our office. We will include your listing on our housing referral list, which is provided to our participants to assist them in their housing search.
If you should have any questions regarding the informational packet or would like additional information about the program, please email LHAinfo@longmontcolorado.gov.
Aside from the retention of good tenants perhaps otherwise unable to afford the unit, the program provides an owner or landlord with many advantages:
1. Guaranteed rent, together with an opportunity to fill vacant units.
a) There are no requirements to continue a lease or HAP contract after it expires if the owner/manager is dissatisfied with the program. There are no requirements to lease additional units under the program after leasing one. Any type of rental housing qualifies (single-family homes, duplexes, apartments, and mobile homes) provided it meets applicable program standards.
b) If you lease to a voucher holder, your next tenant might be a non-voucher holder. You can come into and out of the program with each new tenant.
3. Contribution to the community by addressing a portion of lower-income housing needs through the utilization of existing housing stock.
In exchange for these benefits, the landlord is requested to:
Agree to an annual inspection by the Authority confirming housing quality standards.
Notify the tenant in writing of a proposed eviction with a copy to LHA.
Comply with standard nondiscrimination and affirmative marketing requirements.
Please note that there are NO requirements to renegotiate lease after its expiration if the owner or landlord is dissatisfied with the program. There are NO requirements to lease additional units under the program after leasing one.
Any type of rental housing qualifies (single-family homes, apartments, and mobile homes) provided it meets applicable program standards.
Inspections: The rental units must meet HUD’s Section 8 Housing Quality Standards. In preparation of the Section 8 inspection, the property owner must ensure that utility services are on and the unit should be “move-in” ready. (Tenant paid utilities can be transferred from the owner to the tenant at tenancy.)
Rent Reasonableness: At the time of the Section 8 inspection, the inspector will also evaluate the rent reasonableness of the unit. The proposed rent will be compared to rent for other comparable units on the market. Rental amounts will be approved prior to the inspection. If the requested rent cannot be approved, Section 8 staff will contact the property owner and tenant with a rental offer based on the inspection report and rental market information.
Disapproval of Tenancy: If the family chooses a unit with a gross rent greater than their approved payment standard and their share of the rent exceeds 40% of their monthly-adjusted income, Longmont Housing Authority is not permitted to approve tenancy. (Gross rent = contract rent + utility allowance). However, the landlord may choose to negotiate a lesser rent to meet compliance with program guidelines.
Approval of Tenancy: If the unit passes inspection and the rent is reasonable or a negotiated rental offer is accepted, we will approve tenancy to begin the following day. The Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) Contract will be prepared with the date of approved tenancy and an appointment will be scheduled with the landlord and tenant to execute the HAP Contract and landlord’s lease.
Security Deposit: The tenant is responsible for the payment of the security deposit to the landlord and cannot exceed one (1) month’s rent.
If the landlord should allow and the tenant agrees to move in prior to the effective date of the HAP Contract, (beginning of Section 8 Rental Assistance) the tenant must be prepared to pay the portion of the rent incurred for unapproved occupancy (prior to effective date of contract).
Thank you for your interest in the Section 8 Program. We are looking forward to working with you as a participating property owner. If you should have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our main office at 303-774-4610.