About Howard County Housing Commission

The Howard County Housing Commission is a Section 8 and Public Housing Public Housing Agency in Columbia, Maryland.

The Howard County Housing Commission serves Howard County, Columbia, Ellicott City, Elkridge and Savage.

Howard County Housing Commission Waiting Lists

Howard County Housing Commission Housing Choice Voucher Waiting List: Closed

The Howard County Housing Commission (HCHC) Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Waiting List is currently closed. It was last open in July 2012.  There is no notice of when this waiting list will reopen.

For more information, visit the HCHC website, or call the office at (410) 313-6320.

Last Updated on 07/14/2016.

Public Housing Waiting List: Closed

The Howard County Housing Commission (HCHC) is not accepting public housing waiting list applications at this time.

Last Updated on 05/22/2015.

More information about Howard County Housing Commission can be found on its website at http://www.howardcountymd.gov/.


About the Howard County Housing Commission Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program

As of the most recent VMS report, Howard County Housing Commission manages 761 active Housing Choice Vouchers.

The following is a summary of the types of vouchers managed and the monthly costs of each:

Standard Homeownership Tenant Protection Ported Out Non-Elderly Disabled
Vouchers 590 1 82 12 26
Monthly Cost Per Voucher $1,122 $694 $1,113 $541 $887
Monthly Cost $662,113 $694 $91,280 $6,491 $23,069

Household Characteristics of Voucher Holders for Howard County Housing Commission

Waiting List and Tenancy

According to the 2016 Q4 Picture of Subsidized Households database, the housing authority's voucher program has an annual turnover of 3% having issued approximately 434 vouchers in the past year. The average voucher holder has received housing benefits for 10 years and 6 months. According to the 2016 PSH database, persons who were issued a voucher in the preceding 12 months waited an average of 77 months on the waiting list1.

Income Characteristics

According to 2016 Q4 Picture of Subsidized Households data, the average voucher household contains 2.5 persons and has a household income of $19,320 per year. 89% of households were very low income (VLI) and 68% were extremely low income (ELI). 37% of households had wages as a major source of income, 4% of households had welfare (TANF, General Assistance or Public Assistance) as their primary source of income, and 56% of households had other income (Social Security, Disability or Pension) as their major source of income.

Heads of Household Characteristics

1% of households were headed by a person 24 years old or less, 52% were headed by a person 25 to 49 years old, 23% were headed by a person 51 to 60 years old, and 24% were headed by a person 62 years old or older. In addition, 2% of households were headed by a person 85 years old or older.

47% of households included children, 3% of which had two adults in the household. 46% of households with children have a female head of household. 86% of all households were headed by a female.

79% of all voucher households were headed by minorities with 73% of all heads of households being Black and 1% being Hispanic.

Of all households participating in the Howard County Housing Commission Housing Choice Voucher program, 23% include at least one person with a disability. 34% of households with a head of household 61 years or less were headed by a person with a disability. 67% of households headed by someone 62 or older were headed by a person with a disability.

Bedroom Size and Overhousing

29% of voucher holders reside in a home with zero or 1 bedroom, 34% with 2 bedrooms and 38% with 3 or more bedrooms. 11% of voucher recipients are considered overhoused, meaning they occupy a rental unit larger than their family size requires.

Rent, Assistance, and Utility Allowances

The average monthly tenant contribution to rent by Howard County Housing Commission voucher holders in 2016 was $515 and the average monthly HUD expenditure per voucher holder was $2,100. The average utility allowance across all voucher recipients is $182.



1. This Picture of Subsidized Households data field is the average wait time of those who received a voucher in the preceding 12 months. Due to special voucher programs like VASH, recent waiting list purges, or waiting list preferences the average wait time can vary significantly from one year to the next and it is entirely possible many current applicants on the waiting list have been waiting for assistance for far longer.