Affordable Housing Online is monitoring the federal government's response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. As of March 13, 2020, Public Housing Agencies across the nation are closing their doors to the public. Most offices are still running and will communicate by phone, email, or mail. Some offices have drop boxes installed outside, so documents can still be hand-delivered. Visit the housing authority's website for the latest on its current operations, if one is available. If there is no information online, contact the housing authority directly. Due to a high volume of calls and modified office hours in most areas, expect a long wait time (days or weeks) for a response. To find your local PHA's contact info, browse by state here.

An extensive list of coronavirus resources for low-income households can be found here.

Can I use a Section 8 voucher to help pay my mortgage?

Answer

Yes, you can use a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher to help pay your mortgage, but the housing authority that manages your voucher must participate in HUD's Homeownership Voucher Program.

This program operates just like the Section 8 program, only your voucher is used to pay your mortgage and other homeownership expenses.

Housing authorities may choose to participate in the Homeownership Voucher Program, but are not required to do so by HUD. From 2012-2017, 963 housing authorities nationwide have reported the use of a Homeownership Voucher. All states but Wyoming have at least one housing authority that has participated in the program, and many states have numerous participating housing authorities. Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, and Guam have participating housing authorities as well. A spreadsheet of these housing authorities can be found here, in the link titled "MS-Excel file" under the section "Do all PHA's participate in this program?"

Expenses that may be assisted by your voucher include:

  • Mortgage principal and interest.
  • Mortgage insurance premium.
  • Real estate taxes and homeowner insurance.
  • Housing authority allowance for utilities.
  • Housing authority allowance for routine maintenance costs.
  • Housing authority allowance for major repairs and replacements.
  • Principal and interest on debt to finance major repairs and replacements.
  • And principal and interest on debt to finance costs to make the home accessible for a family member with disabilities if the housing authority determines it is needed as a reasonable accommodation.

Homeownership Voucher participants must already have a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher. If you don't currently have a Section 8 Voucher, you would first need to obtain one by applying to an open waiting list through the housing authority that serves your area of interest.

You can find more on how to apply for a Section 8 Voucher here.

More FAQs from Low Income Households

  • Can I be evicted if my HUD apartment is sold?
  • How Much Are Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers Worth
  • What is Section 8?
  • Can a Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers be transferred to another person?
  • My family and I live in Section 8, but I have to move. Can we continue to receive Section 8 assistance in both places?