Are you wondering if you meet the Section 8 requirements in Missouri? If so, these eligibility guidelines may help. Overall, the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program can help if you struggle to pay rent or keep up with housing expenses every month. Since vouchers are in high demand, understanding the eligibility criteria is essential.
The MO Section 8 qualifications are determined by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the local Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) throughout the state. Note that PHAs are often referred to as housing authorities. To learn more about the eligibility criteria for this program, continue reading below.
What are the Section 8 requirements in Missouri?
Section 8 eligibility in MO depends on three main factors: where you live, your citizenship status and your income level as compared to the size of your family. In addition, all members of your family must meet the HCV program criteria and pass background checks.
As a general rule, you may apply for vouchers as long as a waitlist is open and your primary residence is in Missouri. Secondly, you and your family members must be citizens or legal non-citizens. You will have to prove that you meet both of these requirements by producing certain identification documents.
The next step in reviewing your Section 8 housing eligibility is to check your income level. The income limits in each county are updated each year, so it is important to reference the most current limits.
If you are approved for vouchers and reach the top of the waitlist, you must comply with the program rules. For instance, you must live in your new home for a minimum of one year and agree to pay your share of the rent.
What are the Missouri Section 8 income limits?
In order to meet the Section 8 housing requirements in Missouri, your income must not exceed a certain limit. The exact limit amount depends on the size of your household and the median income level in your county. As a result, you must check the income limits in your town, because the limits in other towns will be different.
Generally, the HUD Section 8 income guidelines state that you may qualify if your earnings do not go above 50 percent of the median income in your metropolitan area or county. If your income is below 30 percent of this median, you will have an even greater chance of receiving a spot on the waitlist. This is due to a federal law that requires PHAs to give 75 percent of their vouchers to extremely low-income families.
If you are wondering whether you qualify based on your income, first combine the earned incomes of all the working members of your household. Do not take taxes and deductions into account, as your PHA will factor those in later.
The Section 8 requirements for income state that you will also need to report resources and forms of unearned income, if applicable. These include:
- Cash on hand.
- Stocks and bonds.
- Real estate.
- Benefits from another federal assistance program, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits.
Depending on the size of the asset or the benefits, such resources may or may not affect your eligibility. Discover more important income information when you download our trustworthy guide.
Which documents do I need to meet Section 8 requirements in Missouri?
In addition to meeting the Section 8 qualifications, you must be able to verify the information you provide on your application. A PHA caseworker may require you to do this by presenting certain documents, including:
- Proof that you have a Missouri address. This may be a utility bill, mortgage agreement or lease.
- Proof of citizenship or legal non-citizenship. This may be a birth certificate, U.S. passport, visa, green card, admitted refugee form or another approved document.
- Proof of employment. This may be a recent paycheck or a letter from your employer.
A caseworker may ask you to bring in other documents depending on your situation. If you are a senior or have a disability, for example, you may need to bring in medical documentation. In the event that a member of your household is a student in college or a training program, he or she may need to bring in proof of enrollment.
Which Missouri Section 8 housing requirements do I have to meet?
If you have Section 8 eligibility and reach the top of the waitlist, you may begin searching for a new home. Your PHA will provide you with resources to help you in your search, such as the names of approved online listings.
If you select a new home in your area, that home must pass a health and safety inspection. A PHA employee will visit the housing unit and make sure there are no causes for concern.
As an example, a unit with mold or pest problems will not pass the inspection. Acceptable homes must also have certain utilities, such as a stove and a shower or bathtub.
After you find out you have Section 8 housing eligibility in MO, you must make sure the landlord or owner of your new home accepts vouchers. If you have chosen an apartment, the landlord must be approved by your PHA. Leases must last at least one year. After that, you and your landlord may discuss other options.
Depending on your circumstances, you may also have the option of staying in your current housing. Just remember that your current home must still undergo the PHA inspection.
What happens if I don’t meet the Section 8 qualifications?
If you do not meet all the Section 8 requirements in Missouri, you may be denied housing choice vouchers. You may also be denied benefits even if you qualify for them, since other applicants may be prioritized for different circumstances. Overall, local PHAs can only distribute a limited number of vouchers every year.
In some circumstances, you may be entitled to an informal review after receiving a denial notification. If you wish to have a review, you must request one as soon as possible. The review will typically take place at your local PHA and you will have the option of bringing a representative.
During the meeting, a PHA worker will go over your application with you and give you the chance to explain why you disagree with the decision.