Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program
About the Program
The Housing Choice Voucher is a rental housing assistance program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The program assists very low-income persons, families, the elderly and persons with disabilities to reside in safe, decent, rental housing they can afford. Housing assistance is contingent on eligibility for the program and availability of funding.
Terrell Housing Department has the capacity to issue 458 Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers. Families in the HCV program have the choice and responsibility to select their own housing location within the corporate city limits of Terrell, Texas and with a landlord willing to accept the voucher. HCV participants pay between 30-40% of their monthly household income toward rent. The voucher covers the rest of the rent and sends the payment directly to the landlord.
- Am I eligible to apply?
- To be eligible to apply, you must be an adult or an emancipated minor, and you must not be currently receiving assistance through the HCV voucher program. Please note if you owe a debt to Terrell Housing Department or any other public housing agency, you can still apply. However, that debt must be paid in full before you can be eligible to receive HCV assistance.
- If you are unsure, you can still apply. Terrell Housing Department will review all applications to determine if you are eligible.
- Am I eligible for housing assistance?
Eligibility will not be determined at the time you apply. Rather, eligibility will be determined in the order you are called from the waitlist for an eligibility interview. In the eligibility interview, that determination will be made. Terrell Housing Department will review the following eligibility categories to determine if you qualify:
- Does the makeup of the family meet the definition of family used by Terrell Housing Department?
- Is the total gross income below the income limits for the program at the time?
- Does the family meet the criteria regarding citizenship or eligible immigration status?
- Has the family disclosed all social security numbers and signed all required consent forms?
- Have all adult household members passed the criminal background check?
- Are any adult household members on the registered sex offenders list?
- Does the family owe any debt to Terrell Housing Department or any other federally assisted housing program?
- Has the family been evicted from federally assisted housing within the past 5 years?
- What are preferences?
Once families are placed onto the Waiting List, applicable preferences are applied. A preference moves the family ahead of all other families that do not have preferences. Preferences are given to the elderly, disabled, and families with children.
- To be designated as an elderly family, the head, co-head or spouse of the household must be 62 years of age or older.
- To be designated as a disable/handicap family, the head, co-head or spouse of the household must be disabled. Verification of disability benefits or verification of disability from a medical professional is required to grant this preference.
- To be designated as a family with children, the child(ren) must be under the age of 18 years of age at the time of the application and they must be residing in your household. The child(ren) must be your biological child, adopted child or court-awarded child.
- A local preference is given to families involuntarily displaced as a result of natural disaster or government actions within the last six months. Certification from a unit of government concerning displacement due to natural disaster or certification from a unit of government concerning displacement due to code enforcement or public improvement/development or displacement by inaccessibility of a unit is required to grant this preference.
Verification of most preferences will be reviewed at the time of your screening interview. However, if involuntary displacement preference is selected, you will be required to submit verification documents within a certain time frame. If your preference documentation is not approved your name will be placed back on the waiting list without preference.
- What are the current income limits?
HCV (Section 8)
Maximum Household Income for each Family Size
Family Size Income 01 $31,150 02 $35,600 03 $40,050 04 $44,500 05 $48,100 06 $51,650 07 $55,200 08 $58,750
- How do I update my information?
If you are on our waiting list for the HCV program, you must keep all your information up to date. For your convenience, you may create an applicant portal account at Assistance Connect website. In the applicant portal, you can:
- View Waiting List Status
- Update your Contact Information
- Send Secure Messages and Contact Us
- View and Print Required Documents
AssistanceCheck is an easy and convenient way to make updates to your housing application without having to make a trip to our office or sending updates in the mail. You are highly encouraged to create an AssistanceCheck account.
When your name reaches the top of the waiting list, Terrell Housing Department will send a letter inviting your family to an eligibility interview. Terrell Housing Department will use the most current address listed on your application. Failure to keep a current mailing address could result in missing your interview and having your application withdrawn.
You may also send a message to Housing Department's email to update your information. When sending emails to update your contact information, please include your name, birthdate and the last four digits of your social security number for identification purposes.
Please note that a change of address with the United States Postal Office is not sufficient for a change of address with our office.
- Do I need an email address to apply online?
Yes, you do need an email address to complete an application and to access Assistance Connect website. The application portal provides an opportunity for applicants to create an email address.
If you are eligible to be placed on the waiting list, you will need an email address to access the applicant portal. Through the applicant portal you can obtain information about your waitlist status, update your contact information, and more.
It is strongly recommended that you create an email account if you do not have one. This can be done through Gmail, Yahoo, Microsoft, and a few other email account servers. An email can be created with no cost to the creator.