An Illinois Section 8 housing list is something that you can use to find affordable places to live. Once a public housing authority (PHA) issues your housing choice voucher, it is your responsibility to find a place to rent. The PHA may assist you by providing Section 8 rental listings for you, but not all housing authorities have the resources to do this.
If you are having trouble finding low income apartments for rent in Illinois, there are many other resources you can use to aid your search. To learn more about locating homes for rent that accept Section 8 and discover which standards an apartment must meet before you can rent it under this program, read the sections below.
What is an approved Section 8 housing list in Illinois?
Some PHAs provide you with official Section 8 listings in Illinois that you can read through to find an acceptable unit to rent. However, the format of these listings will vary depending on the resources the PHA has available.
If a PHA does not have a website, it may provide you with an informational packet on places you can rent. Housing authorities may also offer the following:
- A webpage that contains information for tenants, including available units.
- Links to third-party party apartment for rent apps and websites.
- Advertisements from local landlords who participate in the program.
Keep in mind that PHAs are independent organizations. As such, there is not a standard list that they all use.
However, you can use a statewide resource provided by government departments such as the Department of Human Services and the Department on Aging. Certain PHAs will direct you to use this search engine if you need help finding a unit to rent.
Another option is provided by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which provides federal funding and oversight for Section 8. Using HUD homes for rent listings can help you find:
- Single-family homes.
- Multi-family apartment complexes.
- Other types of apartments.
When looking for apartments for rent that accept Section 8 through HUD or any other approved resource, keep in mind that your search results may also include units in public housing projects. These properties are owned and usually maintained by PHAs.
Your PHA may provide information on housing projects, but you are not required to live in one of these units. The main feature of a housing choice voucher is that you can use it to rent any unit on the open market. Learn more about finding Section 8 approved housing for rent by reading our in-depth guide here.
Other Ways to Find Section 8 Listings in Illinois
In some cases, you will not receive an approved Section 8 housing list due to the fact that many PHAs are small organizations without the resources to keep up-to-date information on available units. Regardless of whether you have access to official Section 8 listings, you can still use a variety of other resources to help find affordable housing.
It is possible find homes for rent that accept Section 8 on websites that exclusively list low-income properties. For example, browsing GoSection8 active listings can be a useful way to find available units.
Keep in mind that these websites are usually accessible by anyone. Furthermore, websites such as this may list a variety of properties, and not all units will require you to have a voucher. This may create more competition with other applicants.
To broaden your search further, you may also consider using general apartment searching websites. You can oftentimes find Section 8 rental listings on traditional housing search engines. These properties may be referred to as income-restricted apartments.
When using a website that includes a variety of property types, you will want to read the details of each listing carefully. Not all postings will indicate whether the unit accepts Section 8 or not. When in doubt, it is a good idea to contact the landlord, so you do not miss out on any opportunities.
Quality Standards for Section 8 Approved Housing in Illinois
After going through a list of low income apartments for rent in IL, you will need to ensure that the unit you choose is suitable for this program. PHAs have certain standards that a unit must meet in order for you to use your voucher.
Even if you found a home on an approved Section 8 housing list, it will still need be reviewed. PHAs carry out inspections to ensure your health and safety. To pass, the rental must:
- Be rented by a landlord who participates in the Section 8 program.
- Have enough space for a family of your size.
- Not have any health or safety issues, such as:
- Faulty electrical components such as light fixtures or outlets.
- Missing smoke alarms or carbon monoxide detectors.
- Broken doors, windows, latches or locks.
- Rodent or bug infestations.
The PHA will check these things before you are allowed to move in. Your apartment will need to undergo another inspection if you choose to renew your lease for the following year.
Tips to Help You Find Low Income Apartments for Rent in Illinois
When searching through Section 8 listings in IL, it is important to be aware of any deadlines that may exist for your voucher. While the rules vary from one PHA to the next, your voucher may expire in as little as 60 days after it is first issued. Some PHAs will allow you to apply for an extension if you are unable to find housing within the deadline.
There are several things you can do to help make your search go more quickly. When using a Section 8 hosing list, keep these tips in mind:
- Have your application materials ready so you can submit your form as soon as you find a unit for rent.
- Use multiple resources for finding Section 8 approved housing, such as websites, print advertisements and apps.
- Consider making an account on apartment websites and apps and sign up for notifications about new units.
You may also be able to look at Section 8 rental listings outside of your current community. If you already live in the service area of the PHA that issued your voucher, you are usually allowed to move anywhere in the U.S. to use your rental assistance.