Moving with the Housing Choice Voucher

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What do I do when I want to move?

Provide your current landlord with the original written 30 Day Notice. Provide the Housing Authority with a copy of the written notice given to your landlord. Contact your Housing Technician to make an appointment to be issued a new Voucher. Do not move until you have been issued a new Voucher. You will lose your housing assistance if you move before being issued a new Voucher. At the appointment with your Housing Technician you will be issued a new Voucher and given a Request for Tenancy Agreement (RFTA) form to be completed by the new landlord and signed by both of you. You will be required to return the completed RFTA form along with a copy of the proposed unsigned lease. Once the RFTA and lease information is approved by your Housing Technician, the new landlord will be contacted to set up the inspection of the new unit. Do not sign the lease or move in until the unit has passed inspection. The inspector will contact you to let you know the date of the inspection. Once the unit passes inspection you will be authorized to sign the lease and move into the new unit.

Can I move outside of Vacaville?

Yes. Portability is a feature of the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program which allows families to move to areas outside the jurisdiction of the VHA/SCHA.  However, families may not be permitted to move outside the VHA/SCHA jurisdiction under portability procedures during the initial year of assisted occupancy, unless the requested move is necessary due to a job offer or necessary medical treatments outside normal commuting distance.  Your HCV allows you to look for housing anywhere within the United States where a Voucher program exists. Once you decide you wish to move to another area under the portability feature, the following steps must be taken:

  • Determine there is a Housing Authority operating a HCV program in the area you want to relocate.
  • Provide your landlord with the original written copy of a 30 Day Notice. Provide the Housing Authority with a copy of the written notice given to your landlord.
  • Schedule an appointment with your Housing Technician to be issued a new Voucher and notify your Housing Technician of what city/state you are planning to relocate to. Do not move until you have been issued a new Voucher. You will lose your housing assistance if you move before being issued a new Voucher.
  • The Housing Authority will mail the necessary documents to the Housing Authority where you are requesting to transfer.
  • When you arrive at your destination, you must check-in with the Receiving Housing Authority before renting a unit. They may require additional information from you before they can process your paperwork. The Receiving Housing Authority will provide you with information necessary for renting a unit in their area. Do not rent a unit until it has been approved by the Receiving Housing Authority. If you rent a unit without approval, you may be responsible for the full rent and lose your Section 8 HCV assistance.

Is there anything else I should know before deciding to relocate to another Housing Authority?

  • The Payment Standard may be different. This may affect the amount the Housing Authority contributes toward your rent.
  • The Receiving Housing Authority may change the bedroom size of your Voucher which also may affect your portion of rent.
  • You must also remember that each Housing Authority operates a little differently. You will be required to follow the rules of the Receiving Housing Authority.

What if I want to change units at the same complex?

Moving within the same complex requires the same process as moving somewhere else except if the landlord is willing to waive the 30-Day Notice.  You must have the landlord’s permission to change units within the same complex. You must contact your Housing Technician to let them know you have the okay of the landlord before moving even within the same complex. Your Housing Technician will need to issue you a new voucher, just as if you were moving to a complete new residence. If you move without being issued a new Voucher (even within the same complex) you will lose your Section 8 assistance. Once you make an appointment with your Housing Technician to be issued the new voucher, your technician will give you a Request for Tenancy Approval (RFTA) form. Even though your landlord is not changing, you will need new paperwork for the new unit. You will have to return the RFTA form completed by your landlord and signed by you and your landlord along with a copy of the proposed unsigned lease. Once the RFTA and lease information is approved by your Housing Technician, your landlord will be contacted to set up an inspection of the new unit. Do not sign the lease or move in until the unit has passed inspection. The inspector will contact you to let you know the date of the inspection. Once the unit passes inspection you will be authorized to sign the lease and move into the new unit.

How do I find a place to live that accepts Section 8?

Landlords are encouraged to advertise their units on www.gosection8.com website. Also check the newspapers, tell friends and relatives what type of unit you are looking for, and drive around the area you are wanting to relocate to check for Rental Available signs on properties.

Are there any other things I should consider?

  • You cannot move to another unit with Section 8 assistance if you owe money to any Housing Authority.
  • The terms of your lease may require you to stay until a certain date. If you decide to move before that date, your landlord must agree in writing. If you move without doing this, you could lose your assistance and be sued by the landlord for monthly rent until the lease runs out or until another tenant is found.
  • You must turn in the signed RFTA prior to 5 p.m. on the day your voucher expires or you will lose your assistance.
  • Housing Assistance Payments cannot begin until the unit is approved and inspected by the Housing Authority.
  • Before making a deposit on a unit, contact your Housing Technician with the rent amount of the unit, utility information, and size and location of the unit to make sure you are eligible.

For more information on how to lease a unit, click here.