About Montana Department of Commerce

The Montana Department of Commerce is a Section 8 public housing agency in Helena, Montana.

The Montana Department of Commerce serves the state of Montana.

Montana Department of Commerce Waiting Lists

Montana Department of Commerce Section 8 HCV Waiting List : Open Indefinitely

Please note: The Montana Department of Commerce administers 11 regional Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher waiting lists for all 56 counties in the State of Montana. Please view waiting list information for each region below.

  • The Action for Eastern Montana waiting list covers the Counties of Carter, Custer, Daniels, Dawson, Fallon, Garfield, McCone, Phillips, Powder River, Prairie, Richland, Roosevelt, Rosebud, Sheridan, Treasure, Valley, and Wibaux, MT.
  • The Bozeman waiting list covers the Counties of Gallatin, Meagher, and Park, MT.
  • The Butte waiting list covers the Counties of Beaverhead, Deer Lodge, Granite, Madison, Powell, and Silver Bow, MT
    Please note: The Housing Authority of Butte operates its own waiting list separate from the MDC.
  • The District 7 HRDC waiting list covers the Counties of Big Horn, Carbon, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, and Yellowstone, MT.
  • The Havre waiting list covers the Counties of Blaine, Hill and Liberty, MT. 
  • The Helena waiting list covers the Counties of Broadwater, Jefferson, and Lewis & Clark, MT.
    Please note: The Helena Housing Authority operates its own waiting list separate from the MDC.
  • The Housing Authority of Billings waiting list covers the City of Billings and cities within a 10-mile radius of Billings, MT
    Please note: The Housing Authority of Billings operates its own waiting list separate from the MDC.
  • The Kalispell waiting list covers the Counties of Flathead, Lake, Lincoln, and Sanders, MT.
  • The Lewistown waiting list covers the Counties of Fergus, Golden Valley, Judith Basin, Muscleshell, Petroleum, and Wheatland, MT.
  • The Missoula waiting list covers the Counties of Mineral, Missoula and Ravalli, MT.
    Please note: The Missoula Housing Authority operates its own waiting list separate from the MDC.
  • The Opp Inc waiting list covers the Counties of Cascade, Chouteau, Glacier, Pondera, Teton, and Toole, MT.

The Montana Department of Commerce (MDC) Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher waiting list is currently open for all covered areas. These waiting lists are open indefinitely. 

To apply, complete the online application here

Please note: You can only apply to one region.

Important note: Applicants who have been placed on the waiting list must inform the housing authority immediately if your application information changes (such as contact information, income, and household members). 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 how to update application information.

Applicants placed on the waiting list will be notified by mail within two months of the application submission.

For more information, visit the MDC website, or call the office at (406) 841-2830.

Last Updated on 12/01/2016.


About the Montana Department of Commerce Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program

As of March 31st, 2016 the Montana Department of Commerce manages 3,767 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 VASH
Vouchers 3,385 34 46 13 286
Monthly Cost Per Voucher $473 $379 $367 $730 $543
Monthly Cost $1,601,020 $12,878 $16,874 $9,494 $155,337

Household Characteristics of Voucher Holders for Montana Department of Commerce

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 22% having issued approximately 169 vouchers in the past year. The average voucher holder has received housing benefits for 6 years and 7 months. According to the 2016 PSH database, persons who were issued a voucher in the preceding 12 months waited an average of 39 months on the waiting list1.

Income Characteristics

According to 2016 Q4 Picture of Subsidized Households data, the average voucher household contains 2 persons and has a household income of $11,024 per year. 97% of households were very low income (VLI) and 77% were extremely low income (ELI). 21% of households had wages as a major source of income, 2% of households had welfare (TANF, General Assistance or Public Assistance) as their primary source of income, and 70% of households had other income (Social Security, Disability or Pension) as their major source of income.

Heads of Household Characteristics

4% of households were headed by a person 24 years old or less, 47% were headed by a person 25 to 49 years old, 26% were headed by a person 51 to 60 years old, and 23% were headed by a person 62 years old or older. In addition, 1% of households were headed by a person 85 years old or older.

39% of households included children, 7% of which had two adults in the household. 33% of households with children have a female head of household. 70% of all households were headed by a female.

23% of all voucher households were headed by minorities with 2% of all heads of households being Black and 0% being Hispanic.

Of all households participating in the Montana Department of Commerce Housing Choice Voucher program, 31% include at least one person with a disability. 49% of households with a head of household 61 years or less were headed by a person with a disability. 76% of households headed by someone 62 or older were headed by a person with a disability.

Bedroom Size and Overhousing

32% of voucher holders reside in a home with zero or 1 bedroom, 40% with 2 bedrooms and 29% with 3 or more bedrooms. 28% 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 Montana Department of Commerce voucher holders in 2016 was $275 and the average monthly HUD expenditure per voucher holder was $593. The average utility allowance across all voucher recipients is $123.



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.