Housing Choice Voucher
The Fairfield Metropolitan Housing Authority closed the Housing Choice Voucher Program Waiting List on October 5th, 2017. However, FMHA is still accepting applications from veterans and emancipated youth.
See below for details.
The Housing Authority will continue to accept applications from Veterans and Emancipated Youth. Individuals meeting this classification may obtain and submit their application by the following process:
- Obtain a printable application online by clicking here to download a PDF version, or by requesting, in writing, an application be mailed to you. Please be sure to include your return mailing address.
- Complete the application.
- You may return the completed application by mail or by using the FMHA Drop Box located on the outside of our office by the front door. Only applications with the required documentation listed below will be accepted, all others will be discarded.
- A DD214, showing an Honorable Discharge (veterans only)
- A copy of your referral letter from Fairfield County Child Protective Services (emancipated youth only)
UPDATING YOUR WAITING LIST PRE-APPLICATION FORM
Remember it is your responsibility to keep the Waiting List information current at all times. If you fail to report a new address or other changes, we may not be able to contact you when your name is pulled from the Waiting List. Please note that FMHA will contact all applicants by mail.
Click here to download a PDF format copy of the Waiting List Change form to report changes and then mail to FMHA, 315 N Columbus Street, Lancaster, OH 43130 OR you can drop off the information in person during regular business hours OR use the Drop Box located outside our main door at the office.
PHAs are permitted to establish local preferences, and to give priority to serving families that meet those criteria. HUD specifically authorizes and places restrictions on certain types of local preferences. HUD also permits the PHA to establish other local preferences, at its discretion. Any local preferences established must be consistent with the PHA plan and the consolidated plan, and must be based on local housing needs and priorities that can be documented by generally accepted data sources.
Waiting List Preferences
- NO FAULT TERMINATION:
The applicant must have been terminated from Fairfield Metropolitan Housing Authority due to lack of funding.
A household that contains a person who served in the active military of the United States and was discharged under conditions other than dishonorable; OR of a household that contains a person serving in the active military of the United States.
Each applicant for financial assistance, under the Veteran definition, shall be a veteran, as defined above, or of an active-duty member; or dependent spouse, surviving spouse, dependent parent, minor child, or ward of a Veteran or deceased Veteran, as defined above, or deceased persons who were so serving at the time of death, or an active-duty member.
- EMANCIPATED FROM FOSTER CARE:
The applicant(s) must be ages 18-22, have been in foster care and have been referred from Fairfield County Child Protective Services.
The wait time to have your name selected from the HCV Waiting List cannot be determined at this time. If you need affordable housing while you wait for assistance, please see our Subsidized Housing information. If you need emergency assistance, click here for a list of shelters in Fairfield County.
Income Level Information
The Housing Choice Voucher Process
- A household in need of assistance applies for a Housing Choice Voucher by completing FMHA’s Pre-Application form.
- If the Waiting List is “open,” FMHA will accept your pre-application form.
- If the Waiting List is “closed,” only veterans and those emancipated from foster care who meet the definition in Waiting List Preferences may apply.
Selection from the Waiting List
- Completing your Pre-Application form enables you to be placed on our Waiting List.
- In most communities, there are not enough vouchers for everyone who needs one, so there is usually a long waiting list.
- The FMHA computer software uses a lottery system to select applicants from the Waiting List.
Eligibility and Verifications
- When a family is selected, the household will be required to supply documentation that verifies their eligibility for the program.
- In addition to income requirements, families must provide proof of legal residence in the United States, any Social Security number to which they have been assigned, and must sign consent forms to verify the income and assets that they have reported. The Housing Authority will check on the criminal record of adult family members and check to see if any member is required to register as a lifetime sexual offender. Families that have a member or members who have engaged in violent criminal activity or drug related criminal activity are, in most cases, not eligible for housing assistance. Families with members that are required to register as a lifetime sexual offender are not eligible for the Housing Choice Voucher program. Please see our Participant Obligations and the Criminal Activity Policy documents for more information.
Section 8 HCV Briefing
- When a household is pulled from the Waiting List and is determined to be eligible for the program, the household is asked to attend a Briefing to learn about the rules and regulations of the program.
- The family is issued a Voucher and may begin to search for a unit to rent.
- The household then has a period of time (60 days) to find a rental unit in the community that meets Section 8 guidelines. When the family locates a home, they submit a Request for Tenancy Approval form to FMHA.
- In some cases, the household may already be living in a housing unit that meets the Section 8 guidelines and may choose to use the Voucher in the existing unit.
HQS, Rent Reasonable, and Affordability Test
- A Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspection is scheduled to ensure that your rental unit is safe, decent, and of good quality.
- The rent of the unit is compared to rents of similar unassisted units in the community to ensure it is reasonable.
- The Housing Authority will determine if your income can support the rental unit you’ve chosen.
FMHA Approves the Unit
- When all paperwork is signed (i.e. lease between the family and owner; and contract between FMHA and owner), the family can move into the unit.
- At this point, the HCV rental assistance begins. The household pays between 30 and 40 percent of their income toward rent and any tenant-paid utilities. The rent subsidy pays the difference. This subsidy is paid directly to the landlord.
It is essential for the family to report any changes in the household within 10 calendar days. These changes include household composition, income increases or decreases, etc.
At least annually, the family must reestablish eligibility for the program. The unit is re-inspected to make sure it continues to meet Section 8 standards.
Renting to Relatives under Section 8 is prohibited. The regulation, 24 CFR 982.306(d) reads “The HA must not approve a unit if the owner is the parent, child, grandparent, grandchild, sister or brother of any member of the family unless the HA determines that approving the unit would provide reasonable accommodation for a family member who is a person with disabilities.” The owner is prohibited from living in the assisted unit, as well.