The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) granted a Federal assistance program called the Housing Choice Voucher Program to help families with financial difficulty to rent an inexpensive but decent and safe house or apartment to live in. However, due to a vast number of applicants, Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) will have to qualify each applicant using HUD`s standard assessment for eligibility. This is to ensure that those who have greater needs will be prioritized. If you are from Indiana, you may take these suggestions to help you out with your application.
1. Assess yourself for eligibility. The requirements and assessment processes are the same in all states of America. However, there are localized or contextual rules and policies that apply in each state, which are set by HUD as per study and consideration of the cost of living and economic circumstance of every state, even in every town in each state. Depending on your needs whether to rent or buy a property, it is important that you are assessed for eligibility as part of the major process of your application. You are eligible to apply if:
- You have a household income that belongs to any of the following categories: below 30% of Indiana's median income of Indiana; low income; and very low income.
- You are an elderly or person with disability;
- You are an American citizen or a legal immigrant.
For your income assessment, you may access a pdf document from huduser.org.
2. Contact local PHAs in Indiana. There is no other way in doing your application but to contact your local HAs. This link provides you a list of HAs in Indiana: hud.gov. You may only contact for initial inquiry, as you must file your application directly to the PHA in the area you wish to live.
3. Work on your Application. To provide legal proof of your income eligibility, collect all your income reports. Take note also that you should be free of moral and criminal records as these affect your application's credibility. Submit all documents as attachment to your application upon visitation to the PHA. You will be given a form, which you will fill out with right information. Remember to visit only the PHA of the area where you are planning to apply for public housing. Bring at least 2 identification cards. Once approved, you will be given a voucher.
4. Look for available apartments or housing via the Internet: You can fill out an online form from: hud.gov. This will help you narrow down your search and give you more options for your application especially if you are considering live in an apartment. You should know that you could apply for public housing in different cities or areas within Indiana. So, you may also consider other important factors like the school or university where your children are going to, area for business and so on.
5. Contact the landlords. The landlords of the housing you are considering must be approved by HUD and should follow HUD's guidelines for Section 8 housing. Discuss all terms with the landlord including the rent. Based on the calculation of your annual monthly income, you may be charged between 0% and 30% of your income depending also to other factors like disability, age and total gross income. Once your rent is finalized, pay this on time. The federal government pays the difference of the market value and the actual rent you pay for the housing of your choice.
In some cases, the application might be tedious. Just take time in filling out forms and submitting all required documents to process your application. Once everything is available, the process will not take too long. Good luck on your application.