Housing Choice Vouchers
What is Section 8? Section 8 is a federally funded housing assistance program which offers rental assistance (subsidy) for dlderly, disabled and families who qualify under the very low-income guidelines. Housing Opportunities of SW Washington administers this program under the regulations and guidelines of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The Housing Choice Voucher Program is successful because it provides the participant with the opportunity to choose the type of rental unit and neighborhood that will meet their interests and needs. Families may also take their housing assistance with them when they move which enables participants to pursue employment and educational opportunities, to be reunited with their friends and family, and to live in a better climate.
Families are eligible for a voucher if their gross household income is below the low-income limit (50% of area median income based on family size) as established by HUD.
A recipient of the Housing Choice Voucher has up to four (4) months or 120 days to find a rental unit within the HOSWW operational boundaries for the size unit for which they are eligible. When the Voucher holder is approved by an owner/manager of the rental unit HOSWW is contacted to schedule an inspection.
HOSWW's representative will physically inspect the unit to ensure it meets the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD's) Housing Quality Standards (HQS). After the rent is negotiated and the unit is approved by the inspector, a lease is entered into between the owner/manager and the tenant. The tenant will then pay directly to the owner/manager their portion of the rent, which must not exceed 40% of their adjusted gross monthly income. Ongoing monthly housing assistance payments (HAP) are issued by HOSWW on the first business day of each month (when funds are generally provided by HUD) for the Housing Authority share owed per the Housing Assistance Payment Contract that is entered into between HOSWW and the owner/manager.
How do I apply? Interested participants must complete a pre-application to be placed on the waiting list. At this time, most waiting lists are closed. Please contact the housing agency's office in the county that you would like to live, or click on this link to view the current waiting list status. (pre-application)
Where are the Section 8 Housing Offices Located? The main office for the Housing Opportunties of SW Washington covering the jurisdictions of City of Longview, unincorporated Cowlitz County, Pacific County, Wahkiakum County and Lewis County is at:
820 11th Ave., Longview WA 98632
(866) 570-8840 (toll free)
(360) 425-9930 (fax)