The HCV Rental Process
The Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program provides rental subsidies to lower-income families that meet federally established income guidelines. Program participants find rental housing and use the vouchers they receive from the Grand Rapids Housing Commission (GRHC) to help pay the rent. The program is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
When a family finds a suitable rental unit and the property owner agrees to participate in the Section 8 program, the family submits the following to the GRHC:
After the GRHC receives the Request for Tenancy Approval and the proposed lease, our staff inspects the rental unit to ensure that it meets HUD Housing Quality Standards. There is no charge to the property owner or tenant for this inspection.
If the GRHC approves the unit and the lease, we will notify the family and the property owner, and we will furnish a HUD Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) contract to the owner. The owner must sign the HAP contract and return it to the GRHC.
Property Owner Responsibilities
Rental property owners who participate in the GRHC’s Section 8 program must...
- Screen and select tenants.
- Provide a lease that conforms to all state and local laws as well as to the Housing Choice Voucher program’s HAP contract.
- Maintain the rental unit in compliance with HUD Housing Quality Standards.
- Collect the tenant’s portion of the rent. The GRHC pays the subsidized portion of the monthly rent directly to the owner—generally this is the difference between a predetermined payment standard and 30 percent of the tenant’s adjusted monthly household income.
- Comply with all requirements of the HAP contract and lease. The terms of a lease cannot be changed without the GRHC’s written acknowledgement.
Per federal requirements, property rented to Housing Choice Voucher program participants is periodically reinspected by the GRHC.
It is illegal for property owners to discriminate based on prospective tenants’ age, race, sex, religion, disability or national origin. It is also illegal to deny tenancy based on the fact that a household has a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher subsidy.
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