Steps to Obtaining Assistance
PHA determines family’s eligibility
Eligibility for a Housing Choice Voucher is based on total annual gross income and family size, and is limited to United States Citizens and specified categories of non-citizens who have eligible immigration status. In general, a family’s income may not exceed 50% of the median income for the county or metropolitan area in which the family chooses to live. The Income Limits for families served by South Carolina Regional Housing Authority #3 are maintained by HUD and vary by location.
PHA issues Housing Choice Voucher
Once a family is determined to be eligible for assistance and funding is available, the HA issues a Housing Choice Voucher. The voucher indicates the number of bedrooms for which the family is eligible and is effective for 60 days from the date of issue. The family will also receive a briefing packet that explains how the program works as well as general guidance on how to find a suitable place to live.
Family locates eligible housing unit
Once a family has been issued a Housing Choice Voucher, they search the private rental market in the community for a housing unit that is decent, safe, and sanitary according to Housing Quality Standards (HQS) as established by HUD. The rent must be reasonable for the size, type, and condition of the unit and the owner must be willing to enter into a contract with the HA and comply with program rules. General guidance on how to search for a suitable unit will be provided in the briefing packet.
Owner approves family
Once the family finds a suitable housing unit to rent, the owner must complete a Request for Tenancy Approval (RTA) form and the HUD Tenancy Addendum. A lease agreement between tenant and owner must also be completed.
PHA approves tenancy and unit
After receipt and review of the RTA, the HA will schedule an inspection of the unit to insure it meets certain HQS criteria. Primarily, the unit must be decent, safe, and sanitary. If the unit passes inspection, the HA will begin the necessary paperwork to provide assistance.
Contract and lease signed
The HA and owner will sign a Housing Assistance Payments Contract and the tenant and the owner will sign a lease agreement.
Housing Assistance Payments made
The HA makes monthly Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) to the owner as long as the family continues to meet eligibility criteria and the unit qualifies under the program. The tenant is responsible for the monthly payment of the difference between the total rent and the HAP.