A Guide to Becoming a Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Landlord
If you are interested in becoming a Housing Choice Voucher landlord, commonly known by the name Section 8, you start by completing a Request for Tenancy Approval (RFTA) for your prospective tenant. PMHA will determine if your asking rent is reasonable for the housing market. We will inspect your rental property to ensure it is safe and sanitary. Once this inspection process is complete and your property and prospective tenant are approved, you and the tenant sign a lease. You submit the signed lease to PMHA, and the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contract is prepared. Once the HAP contract between you and PMHA is executed, you will begin to receive monthly HAPs from PMHA via direct deposit and the remainder of the rent payment from the tenant.
If you’re thinking about participating in the program, and you’d like to know more about the benefits and responsibilities of being a HCV landlord, this guide is a great way to get started.
ADVANTAGES OF BECOMING AN HCV LANDLORD
If you have a property that you believe would benefit from participating in the Section 8 program, there are a variety of advantages:
- Finding tenants: PMHA helps HCV landlords by educating participants about available properties, and there are free listing resources available.
- Guaranteed payment: Landlords receive consistent and timely payment each month via direct deposits.
- Regular inspections: Required inspections can help landlords stay on top of property care and maintenance.
- Community support: HCV landlords help support vulnerable populations, including the elderly and disabled, single parents, and military veterans.
HCV LANDLORD INCENTIVES
PMHA offers a one-time incentive payment of $1,000.00 to new landlords, upon the execution of a new contract for a tenant-based HCV participant, who is under the Moving-to-Work (MTW) program. A “new landlord” is someone who has not rented to a tenant-based voucher participant within the past twelve (12) months. Please read more on the MTW Program here: https://portagehousing.org/programs/moving-to-work/.
HOW TO BECOME AN HCV LANDLORD
If you want to become a Section 8 landlord, it’s important to understand the legal requirements of landlord/tenant relationships in the State of Ohio. Also make sure to review PMHA’s information packet for landlords, which provides details on how the program works for Portage County participants.
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF AN HCV LANDLORD
The primary responsibility of a landlord is to provide “habitable” housing to the community. That means the property should fully comply with all building and safety standards, and the dwelling and common spaces should be sanitary, secure, and regularly maintained. This includes ensuring there is running water, and all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, HVAC, appliances, and other supplied requirements are in good working order.
HCV LANDLORD RIGHTS & OBLIGATIONS
Landlords have the right to collect a security deposit within the guideline of Ohio law, and they should expect to receive all rent payments on time. They also should require that tenants do their part in making sure the property remains habitable. All of these items should be spelled out in your lease agreement.
Unless it’s an emergency, a landlord should provide 24-hour notice of intent to enter and should do so only at reasonable times. In situations where a tenant fails to meet their obligations, a landlord must notify PMHA, and has the right to take legal action.
HOW MUCH RENT CAN HCV LANDLORDS CHARGE?
While Section 8 landlords have the freedom to determine the rental rate for their properties, it must be comparable with rental rates for properties of similar location, quality, size, type, and age.
PMHA IS HERE TO HELP
PMHA offers quarterly landlord orientation sessions, where you can get educated on various topics such as inspections, regulations, and payment information. We also offer a landlord portal that gives 24/7 access to current and past inspection information, payment history, and contact information. If you have any questions, please contact our office. To stay informed about landlord events and other PMHA information, please follow us on our social media platforms.