Section 8 federal housing choice vouchers can help pay for any housing a participant selects that meets the requirements of the program, including a duplex rental in Orange County. The local Public Housing Agency inspects the housing to ensure that it meets acceptable standards of health and safety.
Individuals or families who participate in the housing choice voucher program can choose their own housing, including townhouses, duplexes, apartments or single-family homes, as long as the landlord agrees to take part in the program. The Public Housing Agency informs the participant of the maximum unit size they are eligible for. Once participants find a suitable unit, they sign a lease with the landlord, and the Public Housing Agency also signs an agreement with the landlord to supply a certain amount of the rent after verifying that the rent the landlord requests is reasonable. Participants are free to move from unit to unit due to factors such as employment location or changes to family size without loss of housing assistance.
Although participants must live within the jurisdiction of the Public Housing Agency where they apply for assistance, once their application is approved, they can find housing anywhere in the United States. Participants in the housing choice voucher program generally pay 30 percent of their monthly adjusted gross income for rent and utilities, as of April 2015. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development provides funds to cover the rest of the cost.