Welcome to the Housing Authority of Billings’ Section 8 Rental Assistance Program. As the largest city in the state of Montana, we are striving to make participation in the Section 8 Rental Assistance Program as simple as possible. Participants can assist us in this process by complying with all program policies and regulations.
Section 8 Brochure (printable)
Section 8 Portability Brochure (printable)
Income Limits People who apply for Section 8 must fall in 30% or 50% of median area income limits
How to Apply
Federal rules define eligible families as those with incomes at or below 50 percent of the area median family income estimated for their county.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development annually estimates each county's median family income and then sets income ceilings based on the number of members in the family. Families are defined by federal rules to include (1) two or more people and (2) one or more person who are (a) elderly (62 years old or older), (b) person(s) with disabilities, (c) a single person who is pregnant or (d) a single person.
The Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program enables "lower income" families to pay at least 30% of their income for rent and does not allow them to exceed 40% of their income. The Section 8 Program pays a portion of the monthly rent to the landlords on behalf of those lower income families who qualify for the program.
Families who qualify for the program have two choices in selecting a dwelling unit to rent on the private market. They may choose the unit in which they now live or they may "shop" for a suitable unit in their local housing market. In either case, the unit selected must meet housing quality standards, which is done by an inspection of the unit. In order to participate, families apply specifically for the assistance under this program. Families applying for this program will not be removed from other waiting lists.
The Program requires several processing procedures before the agency may make payments for a portion of the family's rent. Families first complete and send a preliminary application to the agency and are placed on a waiting list. After notice of the potential eligibility and when they are selected from the waiting list, families receive an enrollment interview to complete a federal application for the agency's final determination of their eligibility, which is done at a briefing. If an applicant or family is determined eligible they will sign a 60-day Housing Choice Voucher as well as other valuable information if housing assistance is immediately available.
If housing assistance is not immediately available, an applicant or family will be placed in a holding position and will be contacted as soon as housing assistance is available.
The agency must inspect the rental units and certify the family's income annually. Families are required to inform the agency of any changes in their family size or income within 30 days of the change. Also, families must give the landlord a 30-day written notice of their intent to move with a copy to the Housing Authority Office. Families who move may continue to be assisted in another dwelling unit as long as the unit meets housing quality standards and the rent limitations established for the area they live in are met and also have no outstanding payments to any housing agency.
Landlords may make known the availability of their rental units by listing their units with the agency. A rental-advertising book is available in the Housing Authority of Billings office.
Rents charged by a landlord may be adjusted annually on the anniversary date of the family's lease. For Voucher holders a rent increase must be a reasonable increase, which allows our office to document that there are comparable rents in the area.
The program will help lower income families to secure decent, safe, and sanitary housing while paying in most cases no more than 30 percent of the gross income for rent. The assistance will help the families as they attempt to stabilize their lives and gain economic independence. Landlords are to treat Section 8 renters like all other renters. A Landlord must follow Montana State Law pertaining to renters.
The Housing Authority of Billings is a field agent for the Montana Department of Commerce Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program.
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How to Apply
Go to this page of our website and fill out an online application.
You may pick up an application at our office located at:
2415 1st Avenue North
Billings, MT 59101
Print out an application and mail to the above address.
An application can also be mailed to you if you call 406-245-6391.
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