What can disqualify my Section 8 application?

Getting accepted for their Section 8 application is the first step for low-income families in America for reducing housing costs. The government has recently changed the Section 8 program to the Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCVP). The HCVP is a government assistance program that provides housing for low-income households and reduces their living costs. With this program, families can afford safe and sanitary housing. The types of homes available will depend on the state and city the household live in. Section 8 housing can include the single-family homes, townhouses and apartments. The HCVP is administered by local public housing agencies (PHAs).

After the Section 8 housing application process, the landlord can agree to accept the tenants. Once the landlord has accepted the household, the tenants will pay the difference between the actual rent and the amount subsidized by the HCVP. However, before this can happen, the household must meet certain requirements to receive the benefits. The requirement is mainly based on annual gross income. Even after completing the Section 8 housing application and meeting requirements, households can still be denied. Individuals that have been convicted drug-related and/or violent crimes are an example of this. Continue reading if you want to learn about Section 8 application denial as well as how to find alternative housing for felons.

Learn About the Process for the Section 8 Application

Having a Section 8 application accepted can provide safe housing when households cannot afford it. This becomes a crucial resource for the country so citizens and eligible residents can receive safe and sanitary housing. Although highly beneficial, resources are scarce, so there are conditions in place to make sure the right households get their needs met. 

These rules must continue to be met while living in Section 8 housing. During the application process, the PHA will collect financial and personal information like:

  • Household income and assets.
  • Family composition.
  • Employer and bank information.
  • Background check information.

The Section 8 application form can be completed one of three ways including online, in person or via mail. Every county will have its method of completing the form. In most cases, there will be a long waiting list, thus, placing your application on hold. Remember to check with your local PHA to find the right way to finish the application.

Ask about the Section 8 housing application waitlist since there are times when the PHA may not be taking more applicants. Once on the waiting list, you will wait until the PHA contacts you about whether you are eligible for a housing voucher. During the application process, it is important to prepare the following materials:

  • Photo identification for every household member
  • Acceptable proof of residency for every member
  • Social Security verification for all members
  • Verification for total household income and assets

If your Section 8 application has been approved, then be prepared to continue updating the PHA as a beneficiary. The majority of PHAs will need you to provide information such as changes in employment, increase in income and changes in status for other household members. The only time rejections or denials occur are after completing the Section 8 application.

Why Your Section 8 Application Can Be Denied

The demand for Section 8 housing is much higher than the resources available, so the PHA has rules in place to determine eligibility. It is possible to be rejected for housing assistance if you or a household member are considered one of the following:

  • A registered sex offender
  • Been convicted of a drug-related crime, especially while living in assisted housing
  • Have committed a violent crime
  • Have committed crimes threatening the safety and health of Section 8 residents

The PHA will review at any previous convictions and arrests with the past five years, as well as dismissals and expungements. The PHA will thoroughly examine your track record, looking at the situations for past convictions when making a decision to either reject or accept your Section 8 housing application. This is a review of past convictions is done on a case-by-case basis and will require more documentation.

Learn About Section 8 Application Denial

Most PHAs will offer a denial appeal when your Section 8 application has been denied. To further discuss eligibility for this program, you may request a hearing. This is crucial for if you are currently living in Section 8 housing

Evictions can also negatively affect your chances of receiving government housing in the future. When you file an appeal, gather the following documents in order to prepare for the hearing:

  • Your Section 8 contract if and when applicable
  • Damage claim
  • Any lease contracts
  • Repayment agreement
  • Written complaints by witnesses
  • Any police reports and other relevant documents

While you are preparing your documents, it may be beneficial to have a lawyer present. Depending on the information that is requested for the hearing, a lawyer can defend you in court.

How to Find Felony-Approved Apartments Near Me

Denial of your Section 8 application can depend on the regulations for your local PHA. If you are denied because of felony charges, then an alternative is to find felony approved apartments. Landlords will run criminal background checks on new applicants and they are legally allowed to turn someone away if they have a criminal background. This is standard practice among Section 8 landlords to reduce liability risk.

However, it is possible to find available housing for felons locally if you research carefully. There are landlords that will accept a rental application despite a criminal background. They may even offer lower rent costs for qualifying individuals. Each landlord will operate their business in a variety of ways and, thus, thorough research is necessary in order to find the right rental unit.

An online search can show reviews and apartment that will rent to applicants with a felony. Some search topics that can prove useful for your search are:

  • “How to find felon approved apartments near me?”
  • Felon friendly apartments near me available for rent.”
  • “Apartments for rent felony friendly.”

An internet search can typically suffice, providing a list of apartments and housing complexes for felons. You can also ask family and friends to provide referrals and recommendations. Moreover, felony-approved apartments can require more documentation.