The federal government offers the Housing Choice Voucher Program, which is also known as Section 8, in order to assist low income families, the elderly and people with disabilities to afford rent. The beneficiaries of this program are able to use their housing benefits in order pay for decent, safe and sanitary rental homes through the private market.
State residents who meet the eligibility requirements for Section 8 in Nebraska are encouraged to apply in order to be able to afford low income housing outside of economically distressed areas. Despite the fact that Section 8 housing program is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), it is managed at the local level by Public Housing Agencies (PHAs).
As such, residents are required to apply at their nearest PHA in order to start receiving housing voucher benefits. Read more to learn about eligibility requirements, how to apply and Section 8 waiting lists before visiting a local PHA.
Discover Nebraska Section 8 Requirements
In Nebraska, local PHAs are responsible for ensuring that all individuals and families who receive housing vouchers meet the established Section 8 requirements. Thus, applicants should expect to provide information to their local PHA in order to confirm their eligibility to the program and determine their level of housing assistance. In order to meet the Section 8 qualifications in Nebraska, applicant families must:
- Meet the qualifications to be considered a family by the HUD and the PHA.
- Meet the Section 8 income limits specified by the HUD and the PHA.
- Qualify as U.S. citizens or legal residents.
- Provide the Social Security Numbers (SSN) of all the family members.
- Fill out an application form that provides family information to the PHA.
- Provide birth certificates for all family members.
The Nebraska Section 8 income limits are determined based on the average median income in various parts of the state. In order to be meet the income requirements for Section 8, applicants must either be in a very low-income family or an extremely low-income family.
According to the HUD definitions, a very low-income family is one whose annual income is below 50 percent of the median income in the area, with adjustments for family size. Families with incomes below 30 percent of the median income in the area are considered extremely low-income.
Note: The HUD may establish Section 8 income limits that are higher or lower than 30, 50 or 80 percent of the median income for an area if the variations are required due to irregularly high or low family incomes.
How to Apply for Section 8 Housing in Nebraska
Depending on the area where you live, your local PHA may accept Section 8 applications on a year-round basis or only during specified periods. For example, the Omaha Housing Authority opens their waiting list for applications only two times each year. As such, the Omaha Housing Authority will typically announce the times when they are accepting applications at least 7 days in advance.
When you go to apply for Section 8 housing, some of the following documents and information may be required to complete the process:
- Your picture ID (driver’s license, passport, etc.)
- The original Social Security cards or proof of Social Security Numbers (SSNs) for all household members
- Birth certificates for all family members
- Proof of citizenship or eligible immigration status of all household members
- Proof of custody of children, if necessary
- Disability or handicap verification, if applicable
Additionally, in order to complete the low income housing application, you will need to provide documents that verify your employment income, benefits from assistance programs and assets of all family members. For all household members that work, you will need to provide the name, address and telephone number of their employer(s).
Moreover, you must include their current rate of regular and overtime pay, as well as the number of hours that they normally work each week. Any other income, such as tips, commissions or profit sharing, must also be included in the total calculation.
Understanding Section 8 Waiting Lists in Nebraska
Applicants who meet the eligibility requirements for housing benefits will be placed on a Section 8 waiting list until they can receive their vouchers. In certain areas of Nebraska, the wait time can be extremely long, which means that hopeful applicants are encouraged to apply to multiple PHAs simultaneously.
In order to meet the low income housing needs in Nebraska, PHAs will often establish priorities that will help determine which types of applicants need assistance more promptly. Any applicants who fall under these local preferences may receive expedited assistance. Some example of local preferences on Section 8 waiting lists include:
- Households with elderly members – Households that contain residents who are 62 years of age or older may have a shortened wait time to receive benefits.
- Households with members who are living with disabilities – Households that contain an individual living with disabilities may receive expedited assistance. These households may also be eligible to receive special accommodations in order to meet the housing needs of the individual with disabilities.
- Retired service members – Certain PHAs may prioritize military veterans on their local preferences on the Section 8 waiting list.
Learn About Nebraska Section 8 Housing Lists
Once a household is approved for housing assistance, they can take advantage of a number of different Section 8 housing lists in Nebraska. These housing lists compile low income housing and sometimes include a list of landlords that are known to accept these types of housing vouchers.
Section 8 housing lists are helpful tools for finding affordable homes in the private market. However, beneficiaries may locate adequate housing however they wish to. Housing lists are resources, not required tools.