Quick Guide For Applying For Section 8 Housing


Receiving assistance from the government can be a tedious task, and applying for a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher is no different. So where do you start? How do you actually obtain an application?

 I felt it’s important to do the research and simplified the entire process for you.

What are Housing Choice Vouchers?


Created in 1974, the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program was established to provide affordable housing options for the elderly, disabled, and low-income families. Funding for this program comes from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Then a Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) is responsible for administering overseeing the local process.

If you are selected as a participant in the program, you would be able to select an eligibly living space that best meets the needs of your family. Each month you would pay 30% of the household’s adjusted monthly income directly to your landlord, and PHA would pay the remaining balance to your landlord.

How do I Know if I qualify?

Eligibility into the program is based on the total annual gross income and family size. If your income does not exceed 30% of the median income in your area it is likely your application will be approved. Due to laws, 75% of voucher applicants must be provided housing vouchers.

If you are unsure if you meet the income requirements your local PHA can assist with providing income details on your local community. Check out this link to find out more information about eligibility!

What is the Application Process Like?

Once you start the application process the PHA will gather personal information to determine your eligibility. They will need your family income, assets, and your family composition- if you have a spouse, or kids living with you?

Be sure you are honest with the PHA office! They will verify everything you say with your bank, your employer, and any other local agencies!

I’m Ready to Apply! Now What?

Once you are ready to apply for a Housing Choice Voucher you will need to contact your local PHA. Here is a link to find the nearest PHA office in your area. The application is free but be sure to check with your local PHA office to determine how to best submit the application.

After you apply you will either be rejected, or placed on a waitlist. If you are placed on the waitlist be patient, current applicants have experienced 1-2 years before getting approved. During this time make sure you are checking your status and being responsive to any request made by the PHA.

Please guide me through the process!

The 4 simple steps to apply for Section 8 online.

Applying for rental assistance online is the easiest and fastest way to apply for section 8 housing.

Most housing authorities across the US have a website where you can obtain a section 8 housing choice voucher. Many Housing Authorities will have software that enables you to fill out an initial application online, saving applicants time from having to mail or drop off an application.

Be aware that your local housing authority may or may not allow you to submit an application online. You may be required to mail or drop off your application.

Step 1. The first step to apply for section 8 online is to contact your local public housing authority (PHA). Most Housing Authorities will have a website where you can obtain a Section 8 housing choice voucher. You can either download the application, fill it out by hand and mail or drop it off at the local housing authority office, or fill the application out online.

Step 2. Register for a waitlist. An online section 8 housing application may require you to create a profile online. This will require you to register some of your basic information such as name, email and phone number. You will also be required to create a username, password and answer security questions.

Step 3. After registering for a wailistcheck account. You will now begin the initial application process. Applicants will be asked a series of questions that the Housing Authority will use to identify the initial eligibility and confirm the identity of an applicant such as: current address, family members, employment, income, additional contacts and value of assets. This information will be prefilled on your online section 8 application. It is required by law to provide accurate information to the best of your ability.

Step 4. The final step in completing your section 8 application online is to confirm your email address. Follow the instructions in the email to confirm your application. Be sure to check your email for any updates and login to your online account for any questions you may have.

I’m Finally Approved!

After some time on the waitlist, you’ve finally gotten the news that you are off the waitlist and now you can start the process of looking for your new home. Rest assure the PHA requires that your new landlord provides safe, sanitary, and decent housing and the unit must pass a housing quality set by the PHA.

You will then sign a year-long lease with the landlord, and the landlord will sign a contract with the PHA. Each party has specific obligations to adhere to throughout the lease term. You will need to make sure that you pay your portion of the rent on time each month, keep the unit in good standing, and immediately notify the PHA if there are any income or family changes.


Getting selected for the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher is no easy feat. However, once you ensure you are eligible and complete your application at your nearest PHA –linked here- you’ve already completed the hard part! Once you are off the waitlist you can start the process of moving to your new home.

Below is the step by step guide with some helpful links.

I hope this was helpful and provided you all the information you needed, but if I missed anything or if you have another question drop a comment below and I’ll be happy to assist!

By Ashley T

As a professional writer, I enjoy researching Benefit Programs and writing articles and guides that are easy to follow for those who are in need of assistance.


  1. I still didn’t submit an application. So if housing in portland isn’t accepting applications. What to due next my son need to apply for some kind of resources that can help him asap.

    1. You can check cities close to you to find out if they are still receiving applications and you can submit with one or two of them.

  2. Yeah I'm on disability and I lost my mom to the coronavirus about a year-and-a-half ago so now I'm about to lose my home I need some help really bad if you can help me I would really appreciate it you can contact me at ********** my name is Luis thank you

    1. Hi Luis, kindly visit the HUD website with link here to submit an application for the section 811 housing assistance for people living with disability.

  3. Thank you for your info. I was wondering is there an agency or private sector that can do the filing me the deadlines and have pull to expedite the process. My. Daughter has severe CHRONES diease and emergency housing is needed I can't seem to communicate with any one person as a go to.
    Fremont CA.

    1. Hello Wafah,

      The HUD or the PHA office in your area is the best place to fill out and submit an application for section 8, so as to be able to track the progress of your waiting list.

  4. Hi thank you so much for all your help your information is helping me a lot I’m disabled and homeless and what I receive from social security is not enough for me to get a one bedroom apartment or even pay the rent life has gotten so expensive rent is so high so thank you for all your help.
    P. S where can I get the application for section 8 I live in West Palm Beach Florida

  5. I'm trying to find the application to go to Boca Raton PHA office n bring in an application. But I can't find an application ANYWHERE. I WENT TO 45 TH. THEY SAID NO THAT THEY DONT GIVE OUT APPLICATIONS N THERE CLOSED BUT THE DOOS OPEN EVERYDAY. I NEED HELP PLZZZZ

    1. Hello juanita,

      Due to the increased numbers of applications for section 8, the PHA office in your area may stop receiving applications so as to respond to those on the waiting list. You can check another location closest to your area to submit an application for section 8.

      1. Hi my name is Robert g I am 68 years old in desperate need for an apartment and live in a garage unsafe very cold in summer very hot 🥵 I have a lot of disabilities please help

        1. Sorry Robert about your disabilities. Please apply for emergency housing at your local PHA office. In your application , ensure to include your disabilities in order to get priority.

  6. Have filled out many forms. Haven't heard anything! How do I know for sure I am on list. On disability recently widowed. Extremely hard to pay bills

    1. Hello Donna,

      Please check with the PHA office where the application was submitted to find out your waiting status.

    1. To check if you are on the waiting list for section 8 after submitting an application, visit the PHA office where the application was submitted to find out.

    1. I live.in a apartment was.purpose to be on section 8 have got nothing.i would like someone to help me get a voucher and have got.no help so ask could all help don’t like live here no more

      1. Hi Beverly,

        to get help with your housing, contact the PHA office and state how urgent your housing needs are, you may be placed on the priority emergency waiting list.

  7. Hello Ashley T , I'm living in a place called the jungle. With my ex and her son. I'm not on the lease and everyone I turn around she kicks me out. At witch point I sleep in my truck for a weak or so then she let's me back in until the next time. Anyway ,I do need some kind of assistance
    As I am disabled from a broken neck in 1977. I've been trying to find out how to apply for housing vouchers, with no success. Im ready to just give up. I would appreciate any help or advice you could give me.thank you !!!!!!
    My info !
    *****@gmail.com 602-**********

    1. Contact your local housing authority to check for your eligibility status in applying for section 8 housing voucher or any other type of housing assistance program.

      1. I have gone through many emails trying to find out if I am signed up for section 8. I honestly dont know if I have completed the application process.
        Thank you,

        1. H David,

          You may need to contact the PHA office where your intial application was submitted to find out if you have completed it or not.

  8. I'm trying to fine section 8 housing authority or section 8 application online, make sure I'm on section 8,no scam,I'm on social security income,SSA and ssi, my landlord is trying to sell the place I'm at,so been look for help from section 8, I'm on section 8 housing authority in my town, thank you for reading my message

  9. How do I get qualified for Emergency Housing?
    My move out date is 1/31/2022.

    I might be able to stay until 2/28/2022 if she hasn't already rented the Duplex I live in.

  10. I'm just hoping that I've done enough to be on the list. I do want to tell you I am disabled 100 percent. And I need help very bad finding an apartment. Can you please help me?

    1. I am so sorry to hear that, for the Section 8 housing voucher, you have to submit an application form with the PHA office nearest to you to get on the waiting list.

    1. To apply for the rental assistance program, you have to get in touch with your local housing authority to start up your application process. You can also do that online by clicking here.

    1. To know if you qualify for the Section 8 housing program, you need to first of all contact your PHA office nearest to you or check online for eligibility criteria for the Section 8.

      1. Ok. I went to the section8 office ta get an application but they gave me a web site to download and have it printed out so I did and I filled it out now I just need to turn it in so I’m just wondering were do I turn it in at.

    1. Kindly visit your local housing authority to submit an application for the Section 8 utility bills assistance voucher.

  11. I live in Mississippi right now and trying to move to Massachusetts. I am on the Section 8 waiting list for seniors but because I am out of state my Preference is low. Would I have a better chance to be approved for a Voucher if I lived in Massachusetts where I applied?

    1. Yes you may have a better chance of being approved. But ensure you update your new address information because if you are not accessible, you may get struck off the waiting list.

  12. I am in need of emergency rental housing voucher program, where can I go to pick up application or website for portal, on SSI $530 MONTH. Some back- pay (extremely low income) elderly, homeless, disabled, emergency help please

    1. Hello Shirley,

      You can know if you’ve been approved for the waiting list by contacting the housing authority you registered with to check your status update.

  13. Hi I am looking for an place that Accept section 8 in San antonio tx I can’t find anything I am going to be homeless by Tuesday Feb 8 2022 me and my kids

    1. Hello Veronica,

      Check out HUD.gov’s online map, an interactive tool that lists apartment buildings it has worked with through Section 8.

      Searching Google for “apartments that accept Section 8″ will also help. Additionally, you may also find a number of non-profit organizations in your area that offer aid in your search.

  14. Faith, Was approved and have a voucher but can’t find a place in key west,fl . What to do now? Time runs out end of feb. We are stuck in homeless shelter. Can you please help us?

    1. Check out HUD.gov’s online map, an interactive tool that lists apartment buildings it has worked with through Section 8.

      Searching Google for “apartments that accept Section 8″ will also help. Additionally, you may also find a number of non-profit organizations in your area that offer aid in your search.

      Also, If your voucher is about to expire, you may be able to get an extension of this search period. In many cases, housing authorities will give one or two 80-day extensions. But—it is up to the housing agency to decide whether or not to give you an extension, and you cannot appeal the decision to deny an extension unless you need an extension because of a disability.

  15. Yes I have been on the wait-list since February 2019. I’m still active but my income has decreased. I’m now on disability for the past 3 yrs. How do I change my income on my application. I cannot find a way to do this. Please help.

  16. Hi my name is Mary F. I’ve been waiting on Section 8 for two and a half years I need my application I need to get a place as soon as possible I’m looking for a two bedroom with a garage my income is 774 a month thank you

    1. Hi Mary,

      The section 8 waiting list is usually a long one due to the increased rate of applications received each year. You can check back with your local housing authority where you submitted your initial application to find out the cause of the delay.

  17. Good Day, I’m 65 yrs old I’m sleeping in my car homeless with mental health & physical problems. I’m taking a lot medication. On a Waiting list for senior housing in Oakland. Please help. Thank you

  18. Hi me my wife are looking for for low income housing because I’m the only one who is working because my wife has epilepsy and she is trying to get ssd.How do i get the app for section 8?

  19. I was on the hud waitlist. They offered me an apartment in public housing. I turned it down because I wanted a voucher program. I live in an apartment complex that except the section 8 voucher program. I want to stay here because my ex doesn’t know where I’m at. They say that I am pernmently off the list because I didn’t expect that apartment. I thought I had a choice where I lived. Please respond as soon as you can, Faith

    1. Hi, you would have to reapply if you need to get affordable housing assistance as you want. The former application was terminated because you rejected the offer given.

  20. 3/10/2022: it is so sad you have to go through these kinds of changes just to try to get a place to live as for myself I’ve been trying to get a place to live for over 3 years I’ve been homeless that long I had kidney surgery December 2nd 2021 in that bad storm rain we had last December and I contracted hypothermia on top of it here it is now March 10th 2022 and still nothing has been righteously done it’s sad you have computers and all of these are the changes to help you work with people and get things done quicker then you’re really doing and everybody is blaming things on the pandemic so the more they blamed the pandemic the less they have to do and that’s sad I have been sleeping in a room on the streets but you know what all of you who have been in these positions to help people you’re going to pay for what you do it’s just a matter of time. You take people’s information and some of you may even use it for your own personal use and other to jam that person up and you know I know and God knows it is wrong you entrusted with people’s information that somehow mysteriously get away from you as the intake worker person it comes up disappearing or ends up in the shredder just as if that person has not even existed but as I stated before you will pay for this you would pay dearly for it because trust is something you have to give add have honorably to do the job right. You two will have a day and when that day come don’t sit up and cry because you have do so much wrong to other people it’s called being put to the test to see how well you can hold up under these kinds of conditions.

    1. Hi, getting approved for the Section 8 housing voucher takes a lot of time and you may need to keep checking with the PHA office or you can submit a new application. We do all we can here to give you the best information for affordable housing assistance.

  21. I also apply in2019for 2bed and 2bath still waiting and in this time I have a big problem after July I don’t have a shelter my wife is hart problem and she is sugar patient and me COPD patient let see when I get shelter

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