King County a county in Washington

This county is served by the King County Housing Authority

King County Housing Authority
Section 8 Waiting List Status: Closed

Affordable Housing Online is tracking the status of the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Waiting List. This is what we know as of our most recent update on February 12th, 2016

Please note: The The King County Housing Authority covers King County, WA, with the exception of Renton and Seattle, WA. Click the links provided for more information on those areas.

The King County Housing Authority (KCHA) Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher waiting list is currently closed. It was last open for about three weeks in January 2015, and prior to that in 2011. There is no notice of when this waiting list will reopen.

To apply during the opening period, applicants were required to complete the online pre-application. The pre-application was available online only.

2,500 applicants were placed onto the waiting list by random lottery in March 2015. More than 25,000 pre-applications were submitted. In 2011, nearly 25,000 pre-applications were submitted.

The KCHA sent a letter or email to all applicants notifying them of their status by March 2015, and began distributing vouchers in April 2015. Applicants can check their status and view an estimated time frame of when each number will receive assistance on the KCHA Sectioin 8 Waiting List and Lottery page.

Important note: Applicants will receive a confirmation number when either applying, or being placed on the waiting list, depending on housing authority policy. It is important to keep that number in a safe, easy to access place. It will be needed any time when referencing your pre-application with the housing authority.

If any of your application information changes from the time you submitted the original pre-application (such as contact information, income, and household members), inform the housing authority immediately. In the case that the office sends a notice that does not get returned, or if application information is out of date, your name may be terminated from the waiting list. Please contact the housing authority to find out its policy on updating pre-application information.

For more information, visit the KCHA website, or call the office at (206) 574-1100.

King County Housing Authority
Public Housing Waiting List Statuses

Family Senior Other
OpenOpenN/A

The King County Housing Authority (KCHA) is currently accepting Public Housing waiting list pre-applications for families and senior/disabled households.


The KCHA offers 60 public housing communities for families and senior/disabled households. For a complete list of each community that the housing authority offers, please follow this link.

Please note: This waiting list has preferences. This means that applicants who qualify for these preferences will receive assistance before applicants who do not. Because of these preferences, it is likely applicants who do qualify will have a long wait to receive assistance, or will not receive assistance from this office.

There are two ways to apply:

  1. Visit the KCHA office to pick up an application, located at 20126 Ballinger Way, NE, Shoreline, WA 98155.
  2. Download a pre-application online here, then print and complete.
Once the application has been completed it can be mailed or hand delivered to:

King County Housing Authority
Central Applications Processing Center
20126 Ballinger Way NE,
PMB #151 
Shoreline, WA 98155

Please note: Hand delivered applications must be delivered before 12:00 pm PT, Monday-Friday.

The following preferences have been identified: Extremely low income, homeless, substandard housing, displaced by government action, displaced by natural disaster, victim of domestic violence, or rent burden.

Important note: Applicants will receive a confirmation number when either applying, or being placed on the waiting list, depending on housing authority policy. It is important to keep that number in a safe, easy to access place. It will be needed any time when referencing your pre-application with the housing authority.

If any of your application information changes from the time you submitted the original pre-application (such as contact information, income, and household members), inform the housing authority immediately. In the case that the office sends a notice that does not get returned, or if application information is out of date, your name may be terminated from the waiting list. Contact the housing authority to find out its policy on how to update pre-application information.

For more information, visit the KCHA website, or call the office at (206) 574-1100.

Market Overview

King County is a county in Washington. The population of King County, according to the 2010 Census, is 1,931,249. The total number of households in the county is 789,232. The average household size for King County is 2.27. The total number of renter households in the county is 322,514 which means that 40.9% of households are renter households.

King County’s Federally assisted affordable rental housing stock includes properties financed through the following programs:

ProgramPropertiesUnits
Section 8 103 4,353
LIHTC 239 20,934
RD 515 3 87
Section 202 37 1,283
Section 811 9 120
Public Housing 90 8,877
Total 267 20,597
Note: The total does not necessarily equal the sum of each program as some properties may participate in multiple funding programs.

The average number of units per property for affordable rentals in King County is 77.10. The largest Federally assisted affordable rental community in the county is Homeworks Phase I at 704 units and the smallest is Bethany House General Partnership at 1 unit(s). 75 apartment properties provide housing for seniors containing 4,811 units. Of the 20,597 units, 9,416 units include some form of rental assistance (like Section 8) to make rent more affordable for very low income families.

Cities with Federally Assisted Projects in King County

CityPropertiesUnits
Seattle 163 12,501
Kent 13 1,393
Auburn 16 1,148
Federal Way 10 1,045
Bellevue 14 897
Renton 10 729
Tukwila 2 545
Kirkland 6 481
Redmond 6 480
Issaquah 9 370
Shoreline 2 272
Seatac 2 181
Enumclaw 3 177
Vashon 4 86
Pacific 1 75
North Bend 2 68
Mercer Island 1 59
Kenmore 1 50
Burien 1 38
Milton 1 29
Des Moines 1 27
Woodinville 1 24
Morton 1 14

Federally Assisted Units By Property

Name Total Units
† This Property is Federally Assisted though Unit Counts are not available from HUD.

Rental Assistance for Tenants in King County

Rental assistance is a type of housing subsidy that pays for a portion of a renter’s monthly housing costs, including rent and tenant paid utilities. This housing assistance can come in the form of Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers, project-based Section 8 contracts, public housing, USDA Rental Assistance (in Section 515 properties) as well as HUD Section 202 and 811 properties.

In King County, there are 102 affordable housing properties providing rental assistance to 9,416 very low income households. In addition, King County Housing Authority provides 8,796 Section 8 rental vouchers in King County.

To qualify for most rental assistance programs a renter must earn no more than 50% of the Area Median Income (AMI). In some cases, rental assistance is reserved for renters earning 30% or less of the AMI. In King County, to qualify for Section 8 assistance, a renter household containing four persons must earn $45,150 or less. For some targeted rental assistance programs, a renter household of four can’t earn more than $27,100.

It’s important to remember that in many rental assistance programs there are minimum rent regulations requiring assistance recipients to make a minimum payment of between $25 and $50 per month no matter how low their income.

HUD Assistance Income Limits

Persons
1234
$31,650$36,150$40,650$45,150
Persons
1234
$19,000$21,700$24,400$27,100

Income Limits

All affordable housing programs provided by or through the government have maximum income limits to qualify for assistance. These income limits are typically derived from the Area Median Income (AMI), the theoretical family income of the average household in a given geography.

The AMI is updated each year for each geographical area taking into consideration numerous economic indicators. The geographical areas used for establishing the AMI are either Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA’s) or counties.

King County is in the Seattle-Bellevue, WA HUD Metro FMR Area MSA. The 2016 Area Median Income for a family of four in King County is $90,300.

The income limits used for Section 8, public housing, Low Income Housing Tax Credits. the HOME program and other Federal programs all are derived from the HUD defined AMI.

Low Income Housing Tax Credit Income Limits

Persons
1234
$37,980$43,380$48,780$54,180
Persons
1234
$31,650$36,150$40,650$45,150

Fair Market Rents (FMR)

HUD establishes a Fair Market Rent each year for each Metropolitan Statistical Area in the country. This rent standard is used to establish Payment Standards for the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program, maximum rents in HOME financed rental projects and initial rents for Section 8 project based assistance. HUD establishes FMR’s for 530 MSA’s and 2,045 counties nationwide each fiscal year.

The FMR is largely a statistical derivative of the US Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS) 5 year estimates for 2 bedroom median rent.

Calculating the maximum allowable rents under various subsidy programs is complex and each program has slightly different rules. In the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher and Project Based Assistance programs, maximum rents a landlord may charge include any tenant paid utility costs.

This utility allowance includes all necessary utilities like water/sewer, trash, heat, electricity or gas. Cable television, telephone, Internet and other non-essential utilities are excluded from this allowance.

In Project Based Section 8 properties, the owner sets the utility allowance after conducting a utility cost analysis. The amount of the allowance is reviewed and approved by HUD. The utility allowance is different for each size dwelling unit.

In the Housing Choice Voucher program, utility allowances are set by the Public Housing Authority (PHA) that administers the program. The PHA sets the allowance based on reasonable utility costs for similar types and sizes of housing units to the unit the voucher holder is renting.

In Section 8 Project Based apartment communities, the maximum rent a tenant may pay is set by the landlord and approved by HUD each year. Initially, the rent charged by the apartment property is limited to the FMR for the area. In some instances, HUD may approve an initial rent of up to 120% of the FMR for the area. Owners may request and HUD may approve annual contract rent increases based on an Annual Adjustment Factor (AAF) determined by local housing and utility costs changes Though contract rents are seldom exactly the same amount as the Fair Market Rent for the area and each Project Based apartment property will have its own contract rent, the FMR can be used as an approximate guide of what maximum contract rents might be.

The amount a Section 8 Project Based tenant will pay is 30% of their adjusted income.

In the Housing Choice Voucher program, the maximum amount the housing authority will pay a landlord is established each year for similar types and sizes of units and is called a Payment Standard. Each housing authority sets its own Payment Standard and usually sets the amount at between 90% and 110% of the Fair Market Rent for the area.

The amount a voucher holder pays for rent, often referred to as a Tenant Contribution, is equal to 30% of their income. If the rental the tenant selects has rent higher than the housing authority Payment Standard, a tenant may pay up to 40% of their income to make up the difference. At least initially, the tenant would not be allowed to pay more than 40% of their income and would have to find a different rental that has a qualifying rent amount.

In King County, under the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program, the King County Housing Authority might pay a landlord with a two bedroom apartment to rent about $1,544 minus the utility allowance. Likewise, a renter in King County with a Section 8 voucher looking to rent a 3 bedroom apartment must find a rental that rents for about $2,240 per month (including the utility allowance). Any amount more than that, the voucher holder could pay the difference as long as they aren’t paying more than 40% of their income. (Note: These rent amounts are approximate since the housing authority’s Payment Standard is likely to be slightly different than HUD’s published FMR. These FMR’s should only be used as a guide. Check with the King County Housing Authority for their actual HCV Payment Standard.)

2017 Fair Market Rents

Bedrooms
01234
$1,093 $1,249 $1,544 $2,240 $2,654

Fair Market Rent Percentage Change Since 1988

The affordable housing industry has long used the FMR as barometer for local rents. Though the geographic areas FMR’s are based on are broad and there are often wide variations in neighborhood rents throughout an MSA, in general, the FMR is one of the best quick tools one can use to judge housing costs in a place.

We took a look at historic FMR’s in King County and found that they have risen an average of 4.31% year over year. The first year in our sample is 1985 when the two bedroom FMR was $461. That same 2 bedroom apartment rent had increased to $1104 by 2013. In 2015 the two bedroom FMR in King County saw it’s largest single year increase going up by 26%.

It’s also interesting to look at the FMR compared to the Consumer Price Index’s housing index to understand how King County rents have fluctuated in comparison to the rest of the Nation. The consumer price index grew an average of -0.89% year over year. The two bedroom FMR in King County has grown faster than the CPI indicating faster than average rent growth in the market.

The largest single year of 2 bedroom FMR growth was in 2015 at 26% while the smallest year of growth was 2005 with a 9.64% decrease.

1,931,249

Population

2.27

Average Household Size

690,046

Total Renters

322,514

Renter Households

789,232

Total Households

High Renter
(94th percentile)

Renters or Owners

40.9%

% of Renter Households

$1,138

Median Rent

$91,917

Median Family Income

45.7%

Renters Overburdened

6.16%

Households in 60-80% AMI Range

20,597

Federally Assisted Units

267

Federally Assisted Projects

239/20,934

Tax Credit Projects/Units

103/4,353

Section 8 Projects/Units

3/87

Section 515 Projects/Units

37/1,283

Section 202 Projects/Units

9/120

Section 811 Projects/Units

3/61

RD Rental Assisted Projects/Units

75/4,811

Senior Projects/Units

9,416

Units with Project Based Rent Subsidy

77.1

Average Units Per Property

$5,026,461,600/year

Gross Rent Paid By All Renters

18.9%

Renters with No Vehicle

6%

Renters Below Poverty Level

18%

Renters Who Taxi, Bike, or Walk to Work

12.2%

Renters Who Use Public Transit to Work

24.9%

Renters With Children

14,741

Vacant Units For Rent

4.4%

Vacancy Rate

10.4%

Units With Utilities Included In Rent

King County

County

Washington

State

King County Housing Authority

Housing Authority