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HCV Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program?
The Housing Choice Voucher Program was formerly known as the Section 8 Program. The Housing Choice Voucher program is designed to help eligible families obtain affordable housing and to provide increased housing choices.

Are you accepting applications for the HCV Program?
We are accepting applications for some of our developments, but not for the Housing Choice Voucher Program.

How long will I have to wait for a Housing Choice Voucher? 
The wait will depend on your rank on the waiting list and the amount of funds available to provide rental assistance under the Housing Choice Voucher Program.

How long may a participant remain on the program?
A participant remains eligible for the program as long as the PHA has a housing assistance payment (HAP) to pay to the owner and the participant does not violate any program regulations.

How long does a participant have to look for a unit?
The initial term of the voucher is 60 days. Depending on certain circumstances you may apply for an extension for an additional 30 days or longer.

What determines the number of bedrooms I qualify for?
For each family, the PHA determines the appropriate number of bedrooms under the PHA subsidy standards.

Where may I use my voucher?
You may search for suitable housing anywhere in the HASBARCO service area; of if eligible you may use the portability option. You may also continue to live at your present unit. Wherever you decide to live must first be approved by HASBARCO by the unit being the appropriate size for your family, the rent must be reasonable and the unit must pass a housing quality standard inspection.

What is portability?
A participant family that has been issued a voucher has the right to use tenant-based voucher assistance to lease a unit anywhere in the United States providing that the unit is located within the jurisdiction of another PHA.

What is my annual recertification?
The PHA is required to reexamine each family's income and composition at least annually, and to adjust the family's level of assistance accordingly.

What if my income changes?
You must report all changes in your income and household composition in writing to your Section 8 Specialist.

May I move other people into my assisted unit?
You may add others to your family/household composition; however, they must be approved by HASBARCO before they may move into your assisted unit.

Who is responsible for paying my utility bills?
You must refer to the HAP lease to determine the responsible party. Utilities must be current at all times whether the family or the owner is responsible for paying the bill; even when a utility service is not being used because of climate conditions, that utility service must be connected and the bill current.

How do I qualify for the HCV Section 8 Program?
The applicant family must qualify as a family as defined by HUD and PHA, have income at or below HUD-specified income limits, qualify on the basis of citizenship or the eligible immigrant status of family members, provide social security number information for family members as required, consent to the PHA's collection and use of family information as provided for in PHA-provided consent forms, past behavior of household members must not include activities that are prohibited by HUD or the PHA.