Section 8 requirements are in place to provide Wisconsin rent assistance to eligible low-income families. Eligibility is determined by annual gross family income and whether families qualify for elderly or disabled status.
The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires all adults seeking rent assistance to sign an authorization of information release. All information provided by section 8 candidates will be subject to verification by the local public housing authority. To meet section 8 qualifications, applicants must fit required income limits and may only have one family residence. A Wisconsin housing authority representative will interview candidates to determine their suitability as tenants.
Section 8 eligibility guidelines define a family as individuals who live together and does not require them to be legally related. However, HUD does have a few exceptions to the rule. Those who live with the family but can be excluded from the family count are:
Additionally, HUD requires some members to be included in the count even if they do not live with the family. Individuals who are absent but must still be counted towards the family number are:
Section 8 income limits are determined by HUD and updated each year. Qualifications for low income housing are broken into three income groups:
The median family income in Wisconsin is $74,700 per year. Based on that number, the Wisconsin Section 8 income requirements are:
It is important to note that HUD requires all housing authorities to issue 75 percent of their new housing vouchers to families who qualify as extremely low income.
To benefit from Section 8 eligibility, candidates in Wisconsin must be at least 18 years of age and a United States citizen or eligible noncitizen. Citizens must provide proof of citizenship for all family members and disclose the Social Security Numbers of all family members older than 6 years of age. All information provided by the family is subject to verification, and a representative from the housing authority might request additional documentation.
Non-citizens will have to provide proof of their immigration status in order confirm their Section 8 housing eligibility. The categories of non-citizens who are qualified for housing choice vouchers include:
Each county in Wisconsin has its own public housing authority and Section 8 waiting list. Some waiting lists are currently closed, and applicants should check with the HUD to see which counties are accepting new applications.
The Rent Assistant Program (RAD) in Wisconsin currently favors applicants who have been involuntarily displaced, are spending more than 50 percent of their income on rent or families living in substandard housing. Housing authorities in WI alternate between providing assistance to those families most qualified and those at the top of the waiting list.
Families who have disabled, elderly or veteran status may also qualify for preferential selection based on the HUD housing requirements. The Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee (HACM) partners with Milwaukee Veteran Affairs to provide Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH). Other counties have similar programs, and veteran can contact the housing authority or their local VA for assistance on how to qualify for Section 8 housing.
Reasons an eligible candidate might receive a Section 8 denial letter include previous evictions, an unclean home or any money owed to the housing authority. Potential beneficiaries who are rejected from the waiting list have the right to appeal a section 8 denial in an informal hearing.
If you have asked “Do I qualify for low income housing?”, contact your county housing authority to ask how to apply to section 8 and check information about Wisconsin Section 8 waiting lists.
To contact your Wisconsin HUD office, click here.