Questions About Subsidy Payments?
Housing Choice Voucher holders pay a percentage of their monthly income toward rent (the tenant portion), then the Housing Authority pays the difference (between the tenant portion and the contract rent due to the landlord).
Landlords have protection because if the tenant’s monthly income decreases the Housing Authority increases their portion of the rental payment when the contract rent due is below the AHA’s Payment Standards. The landlord has increased probability to receive the full rental amount due for rents under the payment standard. AHA’s goal is that landlords always continue to get paid, within the regulations of the program, and the unit stays affordable to the tenant.
A common question is if tenants can pay the difference when an owner goes over the payment standard on a renewal is that unlimited? Simply put, a determination will be made by the Housing Programs Department on the reasonableness of the increase over payment standard. There are many factors that dictate if a rent overpayment standard is reasonable. For example comparable rental properties, and income of renter. Long story short, rent over payment standard is very infrequent.
Payment Standards is the maximum rent AHA may pay for each tenant. Payment standards are set in accordance with regulation based on the area’s Fair Market Rents.
If the gross rent (owner rent or unit plus an allowance for tenant-paid utilities) for a unit is below the listed payment standard, then the unit will be affordable to move-in for the tenant.
If a landlord’s rent is above the payment standard, AHA staff will have to determine affordability at move-in only for the tenant. Once a family completes the first year of tenancy, a rent increase can be requested. The AHA will look only at whether the rent requested is reasonable. There is not a second affordability test; however, if the owner goes over the payment standard, the family will be responsible for that amount –no matter what income the family has.
A utility allowance allows AHA to factor into the rent any utilities for which the tenant must pay. This utility allowance is added to the rent of the unit requested by the landlord to calculate the gross rent for the unit, this amount is used in an affordability calculation at move-in and during the tenancy of the participant in the unit.
Process for Request for Tenancy Approval (RFTA)
When a landlord has decided to rent to a Housing Choice Voucher household, the landlord must complete and submit a Request for Tenancy Approval. This form can be obtained from the prospective tenant.
Follow the instructions.
Follow the instructions of the cover sheet.
Ensure RFTA is completed and signed.
Ensure the RFTA is completed with tenant and landlord signatures (and please include phone numbers). The signatures confirm the required certifications by both the landlord and participant.
Include the lease agreement.
An un-signed lease agreement must be submitted with the RFTA to AHA for review.
AHA has 3-Days to review your RFTA and lease.
Once the completed RFTA is received by AHA, AHA has three business days to determine ownership, affordability, rent reasonableness and that the un-signed lease is in accordance with HUD regulations.
Be available for possible needed follow-up.
If there are any issues, AHA will follow-up with a phone call to address the concerns.
Approval is not the last step!
Once the RFTA is approved, a unit inspection is requested.
Direct Deposit for Landlords is available
The Housing Authority prefers to pay landlords by way of direct deposit. Current landlords with the program can log into Rent Café and complete the steps to set-up direct deposit (EFT) payments. New landlords to the program, can fill out the Direct Deposit Authorization form and submit to:
**Please enclose a voided check with this form or it may delay payment processing.
For further questions, please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions for landlords.