ABOUT THE HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHER PROGRAM
What are common responsibilities of a Housing Choice Voucher Program landlord?
We suggest reading
— this one-page Guidelines for Landlords primer to get a sense of how the program works
— this 2-sided Housing Quality Standard Inspection Checklist to make sure everything is in working order
How do I find an HCV Program Participant?
We will contact you directly after receiving the rental information from the agency’s bi-weekly apartment listing or from your marketing efforts. It is up to the landlord to screen potential tenants and make arrangements regarding the amount of rent and security deposit.
How do I list my apartment for rent?
To advertise your vacant apartment, please call (845) 331-2140. We will list it free on our apartment listing sheets that we update weekly, one for Ulster County and another for Greene County.
What forms/documents are required to lease a unit under the HCV Program?
Owners are required to complete:
- a W-9 form (download a blank form here)
- Request for Tenancy Approval (RFTA) – Provides basic information regarding the unit, including its location, size, the rent amount and utilities. This form is executed by both the tenant and landlord.
- Certificate of Liability Insurance – you or your insurance company may fax a copy of your certificate to our office.
- Sign Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contract prior to payment beginning.
Once the above forms have been submitted to RUPCO, the HCV Program Specialist will determine if the unit is affordable for the tenant. Once the unit is deemed affordable, the Housing Inspector will contact you to schedule the Housing Quality Standards (HQS) Inspection. When the unit passes inspection the tenant will be authorized to move in.
When can I expect my first payment?
Once the tenant is moved in, it will be approximately 30-45 days until you receive the first Housing Assistance Payment (HAP). Housing Assistance Payments are direct deposited on the first of each month into an account designated by the landlord.
HOUSING QUALITY STANDARDS (HQS) INSPECTIONS
Why does my unit have to pass HQS?
United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regulations require RUPCO to inspect all units to ensure that they are in safe, decent and sanitary conditions in accordance with federal Housing Quality Standards. No unit is placed under contract until it is inspected and all necessary repairs are completed.
How many types of inspections are there?
There are three types of HQS inspections performed by RUPCO: Initial, Annual and Special.
What is an initial inspection?
The initial inspection is conducted prior to the tenant(s) moving into the unit. An approval for move-in will not be given until the unit passes inspection.
What does the inspector look for at the initial inspection?
The inspection focuses on but is not limited to:
Interior – doors, ceilings, wiring, flooring, windows, smoke alarms, paint
Exterior – roofing, stairs, railings, paint, garbage and debris removal
What is an annual inspection?
Each unit under contract must be inspected annually. The landlord and tenant will be notified by mail of the date the unit will be inspected. If the landlord wants to be notified, s/he should contact the inspector.
INSPECTION INFORMATION FOR LANDLORDS
Before any property can be approved for the Housing Choice Voucher program its condition must pass HUD’s Housing Quality Standards (HQS) of being “decent, safe and sanitary”. We took the guesswork out of what you need to have in place at your rental apartment. Read our Housing Quality Standard for Initial and Annual Inspections. Using this checklist is a great way to save yourself time, work and money. By investing the time to prepare for your inspection you will greatly improve your chances of passing it the first time.