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Requirements to apply for a section 8 application

Steps you need to take:

Steps to apply for the section 8 application

First, determine which income group you fall into

In order to obtain a Section 8 Program Housing Voucher, you need to meet many requirements and one of them is falling under the income group that normally qualifies for getting Section 8 Program Housing facilities.


The various income groups are calculated on the median income of the particular city or state and this income may vary from year to year. For instance around 2000 and 2003 the US median income was around $62,200 and in 2008 it rose to around $67,000. So whether you fall under low-income group, very low-income group or extremely low-income group depends on what percentage of the median income constitutes of your total income. Let us quickly go through the various low-income groups.

Low-income group

· Low-income group: Your income is 20% less than the median income of your region. According to 2007 figures if you are a single person family and your income is around $59,400 per annum then you come under the low-income group. The per annum figure increases with the number of members in the family. If there are two members in your family then your family falls under the low-income group if your family income per annum is $67,900. If there are five people in your family then a family income of $91,605 qualifies you as the low-income group family. So there are different numbers for different families.

Very low-income group

· Very low-income group: Your income is 50% less than the median income of your region. Again, according to 2007 figures if you’re a single person family and your annual income is $37,150 then you belong to the very low-income group. Your family belongs to the very low-income group if there are five members in your family and your annual income is $57,300. We repeat here that there are different numbers for different families.

Extremely low income group

· Extremely low-income group: Your income is 70% less than the median income of your region. This means, according to 2007 figures, if you are a single person family and your annual income doesn’t exceed $22,300 then you belong to the extremely low-income group. Similarly if there are five family members and the annual income is $34,400 then your family belongs to the extremely low-income group.

You can obtain various income limitation charts from the housing authority offices. This is crucial information. You can learn more tips about how to obtain section 8 housing quickly here.

Who gets priority?

Priority is given to the extremely low income group. But basically these are the three groups that qualify for Section 8 Housing Vouchers.

Watch: Video Summary of How to Apply For Section 8 – Then read below for full details

Make sure your information is accurate

The key to successfully obtaining a section 8 housing program voucher is submitting as much accurate information as possible. Whenever the public housing authority invites new applications there are thousands of applicants and only a few hundred are included in the waiting list and some claim that the last person in the waiting list gets the voucher as late as in two years! So you can easily make out why it is so important to meet all the requirements when you are applying for a section 8 Housing program voucher. By making all the requirements you remove practically all the hurdles on your way to obtaining your section 8 program housing voucher.

List of Requirements for the Section 8 Application

So what are these requirements? Let us quickly go through them one by one.

Criminal Record

· There should be no criminal records pertaining to you within the past five years. First it used to be just one year but recently it got extended to five years.

Apply where you live

· You should be living in the city or county where you are planning to avail the housing facility.


Identification card

· You should have ready with you the social security cards of all your family members in the household and the names on the section 8 application must exactly meet the names on the social security cards.

· The latest photo identification proofs of all the family members that are 18 years or older and 62 years or younger. These photo identification proofs can be anything like driving licenses and membership cards.

· Documented proofs of income generated by all the earning family members in the household, including the head of the family. If you are employed (applies to every family member who is earning) then you will have to obtain a wage certificate from your employer.

· The names of all the family members, their dates of birth, individual phone numbers and their current addresses; the head of the family must supply this information pertaining to himself or herself too.

· The original birth certificates of all the family members.

Proof of residency

Proof of residency such as utility bills

· The proof of your permanent residence in the form of telephone bill or another utility bill. In case you lost your permanent resident due to some accident or natural disaster you will need to visit your local natural disaster center and obtain a written recommendation from there.

Report your income

Report your income

· Are you getting social security and other social welfare allowances and pensions? You may need to mention that and supply the concerned documents at the time of application submission.

Even if you are getting child-support you have to mention that. On the other hand if you are providing child-support you can mention that too. Similarly, if you are earning through other direct and indirect means such as property and investments you will need to reveal that. Hiding such information won’t work in your favor because eventually it gets found out and then it creates more problems and delays for you and your family.



· Information regarding any kind of disability in the family along with certified proof of the disability.

· Age or disability certificate if you are applying as a disabled person or as a person over 62 years of age.

You’ll want to meet all the requirements to apply for a section 8 program for your own benefit because it significantly speeds up the entire process and eliminates the possible hiccups.

Helpful resource:

For information on Section 8 housing issues for seniors and persons with disabilities, click here.

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Written by Jason Strick

A landlord and Section 8 housing and application expert.


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  1. Trying to find an on line application or where i need to go to apply for section 8 low income apts. In the area of Springdale, or Lowell, Arkansas 72745. Thank you, Debbie

  2. can someone get a home under a section 8 voucher when you live in a section 8 seniors and disability complex.i heard recently that you could,even if you have a very low income.if this is true could you please help me to understand how to go about doing it .i also read that we could pick the home after being approved for a home voucher .i am not a senior but have disabilies

    • I think you need to ask the housing complex and the housing authority for section 8 in your area. My feeling is yes, but there are probably some crossover hoops to jump through. It never hurts to forge relationships with staff on both ends of the spectrum.

  3. can someone get a home under a section 8 voucher when you live in a section 8 seniors and disability complex.i heard recently that you could,even if you have a very low income.if this is true could you please help me to understand how to go about doing it .i also read that we could pick the home after being approved for a home voucher .i am not a senior but have disabilies

  4. im currently a single mother with 4 staying in a 2bedrm apartment renting just was wondering how can i get sum help with geting section 8 i have a past criminal history and i just cant get excepted anywere i need a bigger apartment

  5. I qualify for the income part, but what if you have money in retirement acct. that if you pulled it out you would have to pay taxes and big penalties. do they count this money? (I live in California) Thanks

  6. I have applied for section 8 almost a year ago. I haven’t heard from anyone. How do I know if I am even on the list. The only information I received was when I first applied and received a letter not to call them that they would call me when I get to the top of the list. Is there anyway I can find out where I stand on the list and if I can speed up the process.

    • u have to have the number that u got when u sighned up online then go on line and long in

  7. I currntly have sec.8. I am disabled and living with my adult son who is waiting for his disability hearing. Should he get this, our combined income will be a little over 30,000$ ( Iam also getting widow benefits)Will my son have to move out so that I can continue section 8? This won’t effect rent until 2010.

  8. I am a student that has been unemployed for 2 years, with no criminal history. Can I apply for section 8?

  9. Im a single mother of 2 children, they are under 9yo. I am going back to school to finish my career, I had to take the huge step and just enroll and start, I quit my job to start full time in school, I will finish in 1 year. I have about 3 month of rent saved up, but I want to apply for goverment help for this one year, and it is actually my only choice, what are my chances of getting into section 8? and how long for the approval.

  10. how can I have a section 8 voucher? To be able to live in the good condition home,with a low income,

    • The 1st step is to contact your local Section 8 voucher program. Once you get approved, you will have to pick a place depending on the amount of your voucher. Landlords must keep their properties in good condition to comply with Section 8 rules/standards, otherwise the unit won’t pass the inspection (move-in inspection and then a yearly inspection).

  11. I am a single mother of 1 making a little over $20,000 a year. I am currently living in an apartment that accepts Section 8 voucher which I pay full rent. I am number 276 on the waiting list. I have struggled to pay rent for 3 yrs in these apts waiting to be accepted. I was wondering if my income is too high also is there a way to move up faster (I was told vouchers won’t be given out until 2010, I’ve been on the list since May 2006)

  12. I am a mom of 2 and I have been unemployed for 3 months, I live with my mom and would like to have my own place, but my boyfriend who is the father of one of my kids wants to move in with us but he has a criminal history but that was at least a year or 2 ago how would that work? Since I have no income if I was accepted into section 8 what would be my monthly income approximately? Or what would be the voucher amount?

  13. I ROBERT BEEN OUT OF A JOB FOR A MINUTE AND I’M TRYING TO GET HELP WITH SECTION 8 i been working with labor work to make some money so I CAN HELP PAY A BILL.

  14. if i want to leave the apartment but im the head of household, but me and my boyfriend not getting along can i transfer the hpd section 8 on his name and his 2 kids?
    please help i dont know what to do.
    is easier for me to leave then him with two kids under his belf

  15. Hi, my name is Jessica. 3 years ago, I gave up my section8, because it was very hard to find a decent apt. That accepts section 8 voucher. I didn’t inform them that I am giving up my voucher. I never received any notice from HUD , should I have received a notice of termination from Housing? Thanks

    • Well, that depends on what you mean by “I gave up my section 8.” Did you inform them and terminate your voucher? Why would you do that anyway? Do you know how long people wait to get approved?

      In any case, you have to do an annual re-certification so if you have not filled out one of those in the past 3 years, your benefits have likely been terminated.

  16. Im a single man with no kids and I make $200 a week. Can I get approved for section 8? Im really trying to get me a home or an apartment. Im tired of living in this hotel

  17. I have criminal history no meth or sexual charges. I’ve successfully completed treatment, if this helps. Will this disqualify me permanently? What about misdemeanors? Have an assault charge one year back how long do I need to wait for that one? Thanks

    • 5 year wait on criminal past – should be automatic disqualifier, but 5 year wait, it is clearly spelled out in the article above… did you even read it?

      · There should be no criminal records pertaining to you within the past five years. First it used to be just one year but recently it got extended to five years.

  18. My brother is a cancer patient, had surgery and right now in re-hab. He pays 1200.00 a month rent right now. He now has no income other than social security, and was a Band leader legit, and earn income with the Band. Now that has gone, for he can’t continue this type of work, due to his condition. He is 66 years old, and will not be able to live on this income as which was helping him, as Social Security does not give you much to live on. Is there anything he can do to qualify for section 8. Should he find out first if where he lives right now accept section 8? Help! If they don’t take section 8, can we look for places that do? You do have a list right? I am his sister, and he is in no condition to do these things. Time running out, and we need information promptly? Thank you so much. You can email me your response via email.

  19. I have been a kentucky resident for 5 months but I was on the section 8 waiting list in indiana before I moved. I got a letter yesterday that I was approved for vouchers in indiana can I still use that in kentucky if im on the kentucky waiting list already

  20. I jist send my meassg cause i been applying section and i never receive noth7ng if i got approve or noy cause they been sending me eamile about section 8

  21. I was recently on Hud but I’m not anymore. Can I reapply or is there a certain amount of time to wait? Its, been three years

  22. I need a room to live in with bathroom and shower i don’t need anything. More I’m out most of the day looking for work .can you help me . I sometimes sleep in a 24 hour Lundy mat or park..I singed up fo . Section8,but still no response I have not had a place to live in over one year n ahafe. I wish my moma was here ..she past 3 years ago thank you kindly Cecelia ortega

  23. I did not know my husband had a criminal background when we applied for section 8 voucher (virginia). We were denied. We broke up and my husband moved out permanently. I filed an appeal based on the fact he is no longer apart of my household. He has his own apartment. He gave the housing authority a letter requesting his name be removed from the application based on the fact he is no longer part of the requesting household..they still denied me stating he cant remove his name. This makes no sense. I didnt even know him during his criminal activity and had no knowledge

  24. hi I have one question as to section 8 . I had apply for assistance back in 2010 and its 2015 as of now. some people who I’ve known apply way after me had already been accepted .. struggling mom of two part time time only … in Sacramento California.. any suggestion?

  25. Can you get section 8 housing with no income? I am in the process of filing disability and waiting for approval. I am also a single mom who just separated from her daughters father and is also in process of child support. I’ve never been through anything like this before. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

  26. I’m a single parent wit three I Apply for sec 8 housing to get approved your yearly income should be in what Rage?

  27. What if i have 5 children and I am a single mother and recently submitted my application online for section 8 but accidentally forgot to enter my 5 children.. what can I do about that to update my application?? Please help I really hope someone can answer my question how can I submit my kids if I forgot to submit them

    • I didn’t forget to submit them, its just I didn’t see where I could enter their info..

  28. I am a college student without a child, can I apply for sections 8? If I get accepted, can college apartments that make you pay $400+ a month just for your room be covered with the voucher? I am from murfreesboro, and they lease by the room since it’s a college town. If the utilities are included in the rent does the voucher cover? Also if my state ID has a different address, will that slow down the verification process? Lastly, is there a site i can go to with a list of eligible properties in my area?

  29. I’m married and have three kids and I’m trying to separate from my husband while we go through a divorce. I need the extra help because of my low income and I need it asap. In my situation, will the speed up the process? Or will I have to live two extra years 28th him until I’m able?

  30. i have applied section 8 since 2010 before i had my son. now is 2016 i am currently on welfare, was working n there but still is consider under the low income group.. atm me and my 2 kids ages 5 and 3 are living in a low income apartment complex. please help me not sure if i am applying wrong or not but i do not have any records of anything . located in sacramento, ca

  31. So I have two part time jobs a 4 year old child and on social services been living in Albany housing the last 5 years qualified had my voucher in my hand and now they trying to say I no longer qualify shouldn’t I qualify?

    • No criminal backround I make 10.00 a hour at one job barley working 15 hrs weekly been there since 2009 got my raise just the early last year & 12.50 a hour at the other doing 14 hrs weekly I just started in Nov the 12.5 job yeah I had got paid training and they see that on my stubs I need my section 8 please help what do I do I have a meeting tommorow for her to explain why I don’t qualify

  32. If I am a college student in Indiana making about 15k a year would this apply to me? Or are there other programs to assist me?

  33. How much income do you have to make to get HUD ? My friend does not have a public job but babysits and cleans neighbors houses just to make ends meet right now she’s worried she won’t qualify ?

  34. If a don’t share room with my husband no more and sleeping in my living room can I get and extra bedroom. ..

  35. I am 18 years old, currently enrolled in school to receive my high school diploma, and I am unemployed. I am looking for a first job though, and am open to any job opportunities.
    Can I still apply for Section 8 housing? And could they maybe help me out with getting a job?

  36. I’m 20 years old, enrolled in school. Have been unemployed for a couple months. Don’t have a stable place to stay move from couch to couch. Do you think I can apply for section 8 and be accepted.

  37. I’m 19 and I have a newborn , and my mom got me on her section 8 . But I want to get on section 8 on my own will that be a problem ? Or mess up her section 8 ?

  38. I am 24 and my pregnant girlfriend is 21. We are currently living with her parents but needing to get out. We both work part time but she wont be able to work much longer. And i will be the only one working. Do we still qualify?

  39. How long does the process take On Jan 14 I was to bring all my information in ss card birth cerf. check stubs. What is the next step

  40. I dont think its fare i was denied saying it havent been 5 years since i been in trouble when i did the app but its clearly been 7 when they got to my name on the waiting list its not right long as its been 5 when they get to your name should only count not when you done the app so i have to reapply to wait another 4-5 years.

  41. I’m 21 years old an i have a 6 month old baby. I recently moved out of my boyfriends parents house with my child an staying with my sister for the time being I am unemployed an have no income. But I would love to have a place of my own for the first time with my baby? Do I qualify for section 8

  42. If you were denied before, can you reapply? I don’t know why I was denied, I receive tdb from social services.

  43. I’m 24 and have a low paying job. Couch hoping from place to place and all the house are too expensive for me to afford. Could I get into section 8? I’m alone . No kids

  44. Hello I’m getting ssa income because of my mental illness but i’m consider low income, can someone like me could still apply for the section 8 program?

  45. I am a 68 year old woman living on Social Security and a small pension of $115.56 per month. My rent is $703.97 each month and I work part time 3 to 4 days a week for no more than 5 hours for $9.00 an hour standing on my feet which is not good for my back. I live in Co-op City by myself. My social security monthly payment is 1494.00 per month. Do I qualify for help from Section 8. Thank you. Patricia

  46. You take the total income , can I add what I pay for prescription and supplemental insurance plus what’s have to pay for my Medicare insurance . Or subtract my insurances

  47. Hello . I hAve a full time job 40 our per week $10. i am a single and full time student. Can i aply for section 8. I have green card

  48. I’m 17 and from fresno I’m currently 4 months pregnant I was wondering if I could sign up for section 8 now or to I have to wait till I’m 18. My birthday is in august.???

  49. I am soon to lose my child support because my son is about to leave for college soon and I have section 8 and view been living in a two bdrm mobile home now I m going to have to move into a studio or 1 bdrm so what amount am I looking for in terms of rent money and im also moving to another state?

  50. I’m 61, having neurological problems, extreme anxiety, depression, problems, and IBS from the neurological problems, I’m unable to work because of the above-mentioned problems. My home life is very unstable and want to divorce my husband. I have no income. Do I qualify for public housing?

  51. Currently my husband is paying my health insurance, but if we divorce that along with my car insurance won’t be paid by him. We live on about $20,000 unless he’s forced to take money out of investments that are worth around $80,000. Part of our income ($500 a month) is from the investments.

  52. I am 61 years old, married, i want to leave my husband, i work part time, am i able to get help to leave both my husband and home?

  53. Hi…
    I am 39 and I live in LA…
    There’s a lady I know that has section 8 and she has no children…(She’s elderly)
    I want to get section 8…
    Can I get it even though I work and don’t have SSI?

  54. Can i use self employment income? I turn in logs to human services for proof. Can i do that with section 8 also? Im in ohio

  55. My husband and I are 21 living with his mother, stepdad, my husband’s brother,brother’s gf, and his nephew. We are looking to move out, I lost my job last year and have been having health problems so my husband is supporting me. He is a busboy and makes $10/hr, very little tips, total a month $1, 000. As soon as I get better I want to get any job I can get to help him out but until then I was wondering if we would qualify for just the two of us.

  56. If I qualify for everything else, but I am pregnant and receive foodstamps and Cash Aid would that be considered income?

  57. I have the grand mallsrziures my disability. Prevents me from working my husband is the one who works for us myself and two daughters 9 and 5 what is the mimim. And max too qualify for section. 8.

  58. I am 17 with a 3 week old daughter & I received my letter in the mail for section 8 .. could you be 17 & receive the section 8 ? Is there an age requirement ?

  59. My mom is on section 8. I am 25. I am also low income (on ssi) and cannot afford a place of my own. Is there a way for her section 8 to cover me, and can I then take that with me to a new studio apartment? Or would I have to sign up for it separately? And how would I do that? because I can’t figure it out.

  60. Just recieved a call for hcv in iowa for an appointment but I am living in georgia how will they count my income from georgia if I relocate there?

  61. can a male living alone making minimum wage at 40 hr/per wk and paying child support qualify for section 8.and have 2 recent misdemeanors or does criminal record applied to both felonies and misdemeanors

  62. i have an interview for a voucher.. single mother family of 7 but my only income is 173.00 a month now which is child support. when i applied it was 733.00 a month. will i be denied?

  63. Can I apply if I’m 16 years old with a little boy? I’m doing everything by myself I’m a single parent

  64. If I live in NC and I want to apply for section 8 in NY can I do that and if I had a case over 15 years ago will be be able to apply

  65. I’m 15 and pregnant I will be turning 16 in January. Would I be able to apply for section 8 housing

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