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.
HUD’s Tenant Protection Voucher (TPV) program is for Public Housing Agency (PHA) residents who are in danger of being displaced from a low-income apartment complex that had HUD assisted rents or was owned by the PHA. The program has been around in one form or another since 1996.
The displacement could be caused by a variety of reasons, such as:
There are two types of Tenant Protection Vouchers:
Enhanced Vouchers which are given to families to enable them to stay in their apartments even if the rents are raised above Fair Market Rents, and Housing Choice Vouchers for families that must move or choose to move.
With Enhanced Vouchers:
The family has the right to stay in the apartment with enhanced voucher assistance, even if the rent is higher.
The family can stay as long as the apartment is used as a rental unit.
The lease cannot be terminated unless the family commits serious violations of the lease or for another good cause.
The local PHA may determine the current apartment is too big or too small for the family and require the family to move to a smaller or larger apartment within the apartment complex, as soon as one comes available.
Housing Choice Vouchers
If the family chooses to move, the local PHA will issue the family a Housing Choice Voucher, which goes by the same rules as a normally issued Housing Choice Voucher.
This type of Housing Choice Voucher can be used anywhere in the United States or the territories, if the family meets the local PHA’s qualifications.
The family may also request a voucher to move, prior to the end of any lease term.
With specially issued Housing Choice Vouchers:
The family must move because their apartment is being demolished.
The family’s apartment is mandatorily being converted to the Housing Choice Voucher program.
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