What Is Section 8 Housing?

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Section 8 provides subsidized housing for low-income persons; tenants typically pay no more than 30 percent of their income in rent. The official name for Section 8 is the Housing Choice Voucher Program, and it is federal assistance issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In the Section 8 program, a tenant pays a portion of the rent, while the remainder is paid by the program. Section 8 mainly uses a voucher program that is either location or tenant-based. Depending on the voucher type, the tenant must either live in a certain location or has the choice to choose his own location.