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Learn About Section 8 Requirements in Delaware

The Section 8 requirements in Delaware specify the maximum income that you can have, as well as the family composition that you need in order to qualify. Section 8, otherwise known as the housing choice voucher program, is overseen by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which distributes funds to public housing agencies (PHAs) throughout the state.

Once you meet the Section 8 qualifications, and apply, your local PHA is in charge of distributing vouchers.

Some eligibility criteria, such as the Section 8 income limits, vary based on where you live in the state. However, other requirements are the same, no matter where you are. For example, you must be legally present in the U.S. in order to qualify, which is a requirement that all PHAs have.

In the sections below, learn everything you need to know about your Section 8 eligibility, and discover how your family can qualify.

Learn About Delaware Section 8 Requirements for Family Status

The first factor that affects your Section 8 housing eligibility is whether you meet HUD’s definition of a “family.” You can qualify as a family as a single person, provided that you are older than 62 years of age, are disabled or are displaced by a natural disaster or government action.

Your family can also qualify if it is composed of two or more people, with or without children. If your family has two or more members, you do not necessarily need to be elderly, disabled or displaced by a natural disaster to learn how to apply for Section 8 successfully in the state.

When determining your Section 8 eligibility in Delaware, it is important to learn who qualifies as a member of your family, and who does not. The HUD’s definition of family includes people in your household who are related to you by blood, marriage, adoption or other legal action.

As you add up the members of your household, be sure to include children who are temporarily out of the house to attend school, children who you are in the process of adopting and unborn children. If you have any children in foster care, or you share joint custody of a child, these family members should be counted, as well.

Finally, be sure to add family members who are temporarily or permanently out of the house due to work placement, treatment in a hospital or residency in a nursing home.

You cannot qualify for Section 8 in DE by counting household members such as:

  • Foster children whom you host.
  • Guests in your house.
  • Live-in aides who provide assistance to elderly or disabled family members.

These individuals may count as members of your household for other government programs, but the HUD does not consider them to be part of your family for the purposes of Section 8.

What are the Section 8 income limits in Delaware?

One of the most important HUD housing requirements in DE is that your family’s income must be at a certain level. In general, you will meet the qualifications for Section 8 if your family is at or below 50 percent of the median income for the area in which you reside.

When asking, “Do I qualify for low income housing?” it is important to be aware that PHAs are required – by law – to reserve 75 percent of their housing vouchers for families that make 30 percent or less than the median income.

Therefore, PHAs may prioritize applications for families that are extremely low-income, due to the fact that these applicants are in more dire need of affordable housing.

The median family income can vary slightly from one area of the state to the next, so it is necessary to contact your local PHA to learn the exact income limits where you live. However, looking at the average Section 8 income requirements in Delaware can give you a general idea of the requirements.

Refer to the table below to learn the general income requirements:

Family Size 50 Percent of Median Family Income 30 Percent of Median Family Income
1 $27,650 $16,600
2 $31,600 $18,950
3 $35,550 $21,350
4 $39,500 $23,700
5 $42,650 $25,600
6 $45,800 $27,500
7 $49,000 $29,400
8 $52,150 $21,300

As you can see from the table above, the income requirements for Section 8 are affected by your family size. However, your assets can also affect your income levels when determining your eligibility.

The PHA that accepts your application will calculate how much your assets affect your income. The following items are examples of assets that you will need to report:

  • Funds you have in a checking or savings account
  • Stocks, savings bonds and investment accounts
  • Certain retirement accounts, such as an IRA or a Keogh
  • The cash value of your life insurance policy
  • Lump sums you have received, such as inheritances or lottery winnings
  • Equity that you hold in real estate or capital investments

Learn About Delaware Section 8 Qualifications for Legal Presence and Residency

When asking how to qualify for Section 8 housing in DE, your citizenship or legal presence is another important factor. In general, federally funded programs such as Section 8 are only available to those who are in the U.S. legally.

You can meet the qualifications for Section 8 if you are a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national or are a lawfully present noncitizen. However, you cannot qualify as an international student, even though you may be in the U.S. legally.

There are also a few residency requirements for Section 8 that you may need to meet if you do not currently live within the jurisdiction of a PHA. When you are not currently living in a PHA’s service area, you will need to rent a unit within the area for the first 12 months that you receive housing vouchers.

However, you can move anywhere in the U.S. if you already live in the jurisdiction of the PHA where you have applied.

Learn About Additional Section 8 Requirements in Delaware

Even if you meet the DE Section 8 requirements described above, there are several reasons that you can be denied assistance. You will usually not be eligible for Section 8 if any of the following apply to you (or your family members):

  • You refuse to sign the required consent forms for your application
  • You have committed drug-related crimes or violent crimes
  • You have been evicted from public housing in the past
  • You owe money to a PHA for rent or damages to a unit

If one member of a family does not qualify for Section 8 for any reason, PHAs can generally use their discretion to grant assistance to the other family members who were not involved or culpable for the violation.

To contact your Delaware HUD office, click here.