What Will Disqualify You From Section 8 Housing?

iEditorial Note: These blog posts represent the opinion of DoNotPay’s Writers, but each person’s situation and circumstances vary greatly. As a result, you should make sure to do your own independent research. Because everyone is unique, our self-help tools are never guaranteed to help with any specific situation. DoNotPay is not a law firm and is not licensed to practice law. DoNotPay provides a platform for legal information and self-help.

What Will Disqualify You From Section 8 Housing?

Everyone deserves a place to live, but there are many reasons your public housing authority may decline your application for Section 8 or another government rental assistance program. Here are several reasons your Section 8 housing application may be and how DoNotPay may be able to help you reverse that decision.

Why Might I Be Disqualified from Receiving Section 8 Housing?

Most happen for financial reasons, because an error was made on your application, or problems you have had as a public housing renter in the past. Although these issues may keep you from getting a home immediately, we may be able to help.

Financial Disqualifications

Your income is a major factor that might disqualify you from Section 8 housing. Although it is understandable that you may want your rent to be lower if you are having trouble living the lifestyle you want within your current means, this program was designed for households that do not have enough income to cover the lowest rent in their area, basic food, and necessary clothing without assistance.

For this reason, federal guidelines set income caps very low to ensure that Section 8 vouchers go to households that most need them and often have no other means of living in their own home. Specific income amounts vary significantly because they are based on the median household income of the county you live in.

These guidelines specify that:

  1. At least 75% of vouchers must go to households that make less than 30 percent of the median household income of their county
  2. Up to 25% percent of vouchers may go to households that make between 30-50 percent of the median household income of their county

This means that you will be disqualified if you make more than 50 percent of the median household income in your county. You may also have a hard time qualifying for financial reasons if you make more than 30 percent of your local median household income.

Section 8 Application Error Disqualifications

Although applications can vary from county to county, your Section 8 application needs to be filled out thoroughly and accurately to avoid accidentally disqualifying yourself. Some common errors that may cause your application are displayed below.

Common Errors That Disqualify You From Receiving Section 8 Housing Aid
  • Missing signatures or dates on an application
  • Not signing an income verification form
  • Not giving consent to have income and other factors considered and verified
  • Not providing accurate income information
  • Not submitting immigration details (if applicable)
  • Not realizing that every adult in your household must complete these steps, not just one person
  • Failing to disclose a criminal record
  • A record of violent crime or sex crimes

Other Section 8 Disqualifications

Section 8 and other public housing programs are intended to help people that are frequently living in unsafe circumstances find a safe and stable place to live. This means that certain problems you may have been involved in while living in public housing or in the recent past may temporarily or permanently disqualify you from Section 8 housing.

These issues may include:

  • Current illegal drug use
  • A drug-related eviction from public housing within the past three years
  • An eviction from public housing for other reasons
  • Methamphetamine production in public housing
  • Fraud, bribery, or similar activity related to public housing
  • Violence toward public housing staff
  • Unpaid rent or damages from previous public housing
  • Refusing to participate in work obligations if you were involved in the welfare-to-work program
  • Recent violent or drug-related activity that may present a legitimate safety hazard to other residents
  • Being required to register as a sex offender

Although most applicants can qualify at age 18, you usually will not qualify if you are a college student under age 24 unless you have at least one dependent, are disabled, or are a veteran.

Appeal a Section 8 Disqualification With the Help of DoNotPay

Under certain circumstances, you may be able to appeal a by working directly with your local housing authority, although there is no formal process for doing so.

DoNotPay's AI Consumer Champion has helped thousands of people appeal a wide range of problems by clearly presenting additional information, such as evidence that you are no longer involved in past problematic behavior, the person who caused an eviction is no longer living with you, your financial situation involves circumstances that are not obvious on paper, or other details that can create a professional case in your favor. Our experts may be able to convince your housing authority that renting to you does not come with the level of risk it may anticipate.

If you want to appeal a disqualification for Section 8 Housing in but don't know where to start, DoNotPay has you covered in 2 easy steps:

  1. Answer a few questions about your income, family size, veteran/disability status, which county you hope to live in, etc.
  2. DoNotPay will find the PHA in charge of that county and contact them with all of your eligibility information to determine if you can start applying. They'll get back to you directly via email with the next steps.

Let the world’s first AI Consumer Champion help you get housing assistance. It’s that easy. And there are more ways to use the app.

What Else Can DoNotPay Do?

We can also help you address dozens of other issues for the best chance of making them work out in your favor. Some of the other problems we can help you solve include:

  • Appealing banned accounts
  • Appealing parking tickets
  • Appealing other fines or fees
  • Finding help paying your rent if you do get approved for Section 8 and do not have enough money to cover the amount that you agreed to in a particular month
  • Dealing with any safety concerns in your rental or with your landlord
  • Saving money by finding the best prices on nearly any item

At DoNotPay, we do not believe that a past mistake should define you, and we are here to help you increase your chances of finding a place to live if there is something in your past that could disqualify you from Section 8. Contact us today to learn more about how we may be able to help you or to get started on an application.

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