The Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) began in 1975 as a way to assist low-income families, elderly, and individuals with disabilities to rent decent, safe, and affordable housing in the community. Through this program, individuals and families receive a “voucher,” also referred to as a “subsidy,” that can be used to obtain housing of their choice which meets the Section 8 program requirements. The Section 8 Program also provides the opportunity for eligible residents to receive assistance with monthly utility costs. Stark Metropolitan Housing Authority (SMHA), through a contract with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), has successfully operated a Section 8 Program in Stark County for over 30 years, providing housing assistance to approximately 1,500 families.
The Many Benefits of the Housing Choice Voucher Program
Participants in the Section 8 Program contribute between 30 and 40% of their monthly income toward housing costs.
All housing that is subsidized through the Section 8 Program must meet Federal Housing Quality Standards thereby ensuring that all participants are provided housing that is decent and safe.
Through the Section 8 Program, families are given the opportunity to choose the type of housing and where they wish to live. Additionally, participants keep their assistance if they chose to move.