Housing Authority of the County of Kern

Participating in the Voucher Program

Program Info

Section 8 is a federally-funded rent subsidy Program for low-income families. Qualifications are based on income & family composition. The Section 8 waiting list is currently closed. Present Section 8 participants may remain in the Section 8 Program as long as there is funding for the program. Tenants need to remain eligible for a rent subsidy according to income guidelines and remain in compliance with their family obligations under the Program. Under the Section 8 Program families select and rent dwellings that meet the program’s Housing Quality Standards. If the dwelling and lease are approved by the Housing Authority then a contract is signed with the Owner and the Tenant to make rent subsidy payments for the family.  The Housing Authority’s subsidy is the difference between 30% of the family’s adjusted monthly income and the contract rent. The Agency pays the subsidy amount directly into the account of the landlord. The Section 8 tenant pays their portion of the rent directly to the landlord.

Becoming a Section 8 Landlord

Download the Landlord Handbook- A Guide on the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program for residential rental property owners.

  • Any housing unit (house, apartment, duplex, condominium, handicap accessible unit) that meets Housing Quality Standards qualifies for Section 8. The rental rate has to be within the Voucher Payment Standards under the Section 8 Program and comparable to the rent of similar units in the private rental market.
  • The Housing Authority does not screen Section 8 participants for tenant suitability. It is the responsibility of the landlord to screen all prospective renters.
  •  The tenant pays the full security deposit that the landlord requires, as long as it is within State law and is the same amount charged for non-Section 8 tenants. The Housing Authority does not help with the security deposit.
  • It is the landlords’ responsibility to choose a Section 8 tenant based on their criteria. Charging an application fee is acceptable, as long as the Section 8 participants are charged the same fee as the non-Section 8 participants.
  • The tenant selected will provide an Owner Application Packet to the landlord. Leases are to be prepared by the owner, signed by the participant, and submitted to Section 8 Department for review and approval.
  • Section 8 rental units are inspected prior to the contract being signed and are inspected biennially thereafter. An inspection sample form is provided in the Owner Application Packet to assist in preparing for the inspection.
  • Housing Authority begins payments after the unit passes inspection and after the tenant moves in.

For information on how to list your property in our Section 8 List click here.