The Section 8 Program
is authorized by the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974. Qualified applicants
choose where they want to live as lon as the rent is determined to be reasonable
and the property meets an inspection based on Housing Quality Standards (HQS) guidelines.
Rent is based on income with ZMHA paying the difference directly to the landlord.
To qualify for Section 8, an application must be completed.
All applications are reviewed to determine if the applicant meets income guidelines.
Qualifying applicants are placed on a waiting list until they are called for an
appointment, at which time the rules and regulations of the program are explained.
Your wait on the waiting list may vary, depending of the level of funding available,
The Section 8 department operates five other specialty programs.
A summary of the five programs follows:
- Mainstream Housing Program enables families having a person with disabilities to
recieve a referral for housing assistance through our collaboration with Six County,
Inc. and Muskingum Behaviorial Health. Those recieving a referral from either agency
are moved to the top of the Section 8 waiting list.
- Family Unification Program provides rental assistance to families whose lack of
adequate housing is a primary cause of the separation, or imminent separation, of
a child or children from their families. This program is a collaboration with the
Muskingum County Children Services and Help Me Grow. Those recieving a referral
from either agency are moved to the top of the Section 8 waiting list to prevent
the family from becoming separated.
- Shelter Plus Care Continuum of Care Program is a program that provides rental assistance
and supportive services for hard-to-serve homeless, diabled individuals with serious
mental illness or chronic problems with alcohol and/or drugs. Referrals for this
program are accepted from Six County, Inc. and Muskingum Behaviorial Health.
- Family Self Sufficiency (FSS) Program is a program that encourages subsidized families
to obtain employment that will lead to economic independence and self sufficiency.
This is a five year program where families are linked to needed services. An important
benefit of this program is the FSS escrow (savings) account. As a families' earned
income increases a calculation is completed to determine if the family is eligible
to recieve an escrow account. If a family is eligible the amount of the escrow calculation
is placed in an escrow account. This account will be disbursed to the family as
long as the meet the program guidelines.
- Homeownership Program assists first time homebuyers with their monthly homeownership
expenses. The home must pass an initial housing quality standards inspection conducted
by the Housing Authority and an independent home inspection before the family is
approved to purchase the home. To be eligible for the program a family must complete
an application and meet screening criteria. Screening criteria includes(but not
limited to) meeting an established income and being continuously assisted for one
year on the program.
The Section 8 Department also has a resident Advisory Board to
benefit clients recieving housing assistance. The board meets to discuss the different
ways we can better serve our clients, hear about Section 8 issues, and clarify regulations
as well as to obtain input regarding the program. The board meets the third Tuesday
in February, June, and October.
We also have a quarterly Continuum of Care FSS Affordable Housing Commitee that meets quarterly. The group's mission statement is: Linking
resources to provide a foundation to insure services are available to enable families
to reach their full potential. Twenty four community agencies participate in this
Section 8 Landlord Frequently Asked Question
1). How do I place property on the Section 8 Program?
Contact the Section 8 office with the following
information: address of property, the amount of rent you will be charging, who is
responsible for the utilities, and a telephone for use by clients looking for
housing. In addition, we suggest that you advertise with the statement "Section
Keep in mind the the Section 8 Office does not
screen clients. If an individual meets the income guidelines, they must be accepted
into the program. It is YOUR responsibilty as the owner to screen an any potential
resident. There are various methods to screen potential tenants, with
two of the most effective being: contact at least two previous landlords, and visit
the family at their current home.
2). What happens if I rent to a Section 8 client?
The Section 8 client will give you a form called
Request for Tenancy Approval. This form must be completed
by both parties. The form asks questions such as who is responsible for the utilities,
the rental price, etc.. Once this form is received and reviewed by the Section 8
Office, an inspection will be scheduled. Section 8 inspections are are based on
Housing Quality Standards set by HUD. These standards are reviewed briefly in the
booklet "A Good Place to Live," available at the Section 8 Office.
3). What happens after my property is inspected?
Any defiencies discovered must be corrected. Once
the deficiencies are corrected, the property is re-inspected.
4). Is there any necessary paperwork once the property passes inspection?
After the property passes the inspection, a lease between
the owner and the resident will be signed( the Section 8 Office has a model lease
you may use).
The Section 8 Office is not a property management company,
and any violation of the lease must be handled by the owner. All violations of the
lease should be brought to the attention of the Section 8 Office. Violations of
the lease may lead to termination of the resident's Section 8 Assistence.
At the same time the lease is entered into, a Housing
Assistance Payment(HAP) contract will be executed between the owner and the Housing
Authority. This contract outlines the owner's responsibilities and rights under
the Section 8 Program. An additional addendum will be executed certifying that the
owner will maintain personal liability coverage of $100,000 on the property.
5). Do I still have Landlord Rights if I rent to a Section 8 client?
Yes, you do not lose rights as a landlord. Section 8
landlords and renants must comply with The Ohio Tenant Landlord Bill.
6). Once I rent to a Section 8 client and they move, do I have to rent
to another Section 8 client?
Once a Section 8 client moves from your property, you
are under no obligation to rent your property to another client under the Section
7). What are Housing inspections based on?
Housing inspections are based on Health and safety features.
They are not based on cosmetic items.
8). Who can recieve Section 8 assistance?
Anyone is eligible for Section 8 assistance as
long as they meet income guidelines and do not owe money to any housing authority,
including ZMHA's Public Housing or Section 8 Offices, and pass Ohio drug conviction
and sexual predator conviction screenings.