Section 8 - $300 More a Month!

8 Replies

Good morning landlords!

I am strongly considering making my Maryland rental a Section 8 rental because I can get $300 more each month.  I am totally clueless as to the process; however, I do know that I have to screen my Section 8 tenants the same way I screen other tenants.

Is someone willing to share their process for screening (application, background check, etc.)?  I also have found it extremely challenging to talk with a live person from housing that can assist.  Any recommendations on that?

You screen your tenants the same way as any other but do t have to worry about income S section 8 will ensure this part.

I have 2 section 8 properties and wish I could convert all mine to section 8.

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@Tomiko Graves greetings,

I recommend that you use a reputable tenant placement agency or property management company that has experience in subsidized housing programs. You can also use gosection8.com to find a tenant.

TRY THE LOCAL HOUSING AUTHORITY. NORMALLY THE HOSUING AUTHORTY WILL CONDUCT AS INSPECTION TO MAKE SURE YOUR PROPERTY QUALIFIES AND IS UP TO CODE. CALL, THEY SHOULD BE HELPFUL

Disclaimer: I don't have any properties that are Section 8; this is based on talking to other landlords.

One of the early steps, as I understand it, is that you need to have someone from the housing agency come to your house and do an inspection for Section 8.  This is usually separate from any other inspections that are required (like for a city business license or landlord license).

I am told that in some cities, this inspection is not too bad; in others, the inspectors seem to be paid by how many problems they find, so they always find a lot of problems.  So it's probably a good idea to schedule the inspection such that you have plenty of time to fix things they find, or hire someone to fix things they find.

If your property was built before about 1978, the housing authority may require you to test for and abate any lead paint.  This can cost several thousand dollars, if they require you to hire it done.

Once your property has passed the Section 8 inspection, you can then advertise it, and tell the prospects that you accept Section 8 if they ask.

As far as the "how to get a human" question, I don't have any secret tips.  It probably helps to read everything that the housing authority and the city have on their Web sites about Section 8 housing, including the tenant-focused stuff.  If you read all of that stuff and then raise a specific question that isn't already mentioned in it, they might be a little more likely to get you an answer.

Sometimes it works to go to the housing authority office in person, during business hours, and ask to talk to someone.