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Housing Choice Voucher

A resource for Housing Choice Voucher participants and landlords

Your landlord sets the value of your rental. Home Forward sets the value of your rent voucher. The amount you pay is the difference.

Northwest Tower

The value of your rent voucher depends on your income level, the size of your family, deductions that you might qualify for, and other factors from your application.  The amount is calculated so that a family renting an average apartment will pay 28.5 – 31% of their monthly income for rent and utilities. 

You have the option of renting an apartment or house that is larger than the number of bedrooms on your voucher or more expensive than average. If you do, then the amount you pay will be higher as a result. At the time you start your lease, the maximum you are allowed to pay in rent and utilities (and still receive your voucher) is 50% of your gross monthly income.

We calculate the number of bedrooms that are subsidized based on the size of your family.  One bedroom is assigned for the head of the household, or for a couple living together in a spousal relationship.  For each two additional family members (regardless of age and/or gender), we assign one more bedroom. This allows you to afford a home that has at least one bedroom for every two people in your household.

  • Two unrelated adults who meet all other eligibility requirements and need to provide support to each other because of a disability, may be issued a two-bedroom voucher.

  • A child who is temporarily away from home because of placement in foster care will be counted when determining family size, unless the child is expected to be out of the home for more than six months.

  • A live-in aide, approved by Home Forward to care for a family member who is disabled will be counted in determining the number of bedrooms your voucher will subsidize.

  • Home Forward will grant exceptions to the above standards if we determine that the exceptions are justified by a disability or other individual circumstances. For an exception to be considered, you must provide written documentation justifying the need.

We maintain specific allowances for the monthly costs of utilities such as gas, oil, water, and electricity, based on the number of bedrooms in your rental unit. Visit the Landlord Forms page to view the current Utility Allowance Schedule.

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For Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Somali, and Arabic, this site uses Google Translate. Please contact us if any information provided in your language is incorrect or unclear. Vital forms are all translated by a specialized service. Read our Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Plan here.