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Rental Assistance Information

Section 8 Voucher Program

The WHEDA Housing Choice Voucher Program helps families with very low to extremely low incomes rent decent, safe, sanitary and affordable housing of their choice.

WHEDA currently works with local agents to serve residents in 48 Wisconsin counties where there are no community programs available.

Eligible families pay between 30-40% of their adjusted income for rent. The balance is subsidized by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Resident portions of the rent are re-evaluated at least once a year.

The Payment Standard is the maximum amount of assistance that may be paid. This includes both rent to the owner and utilities for which the resident is responsible.


How to Apply

WHEDA does not distribute or accept Housing Choice Voucher applications in our office. All applications are handled by the agencies with whom we contract. Any requests for applications or questions regarding the status of an application should be directed to our agents. Please refer to the agent list.

An application will ask for the names and Social Security Numbers of all family members who will reside in the unit, family income and assets and other pertinent information.


Waiting Lists

Placement on a waiting list is based on the time and date of application.

Unreasonably long waiting lists can be closed by the agent maintaining it. Applications are not accepted in counties with closed waiting lists. When a waiting list is opened announcements are published in the local newspapers.



A household's annual income may not exceed established limits. The program's income limits are published by HUD on a yearly basis and vary by city or county.

Program eligibility is determined by:

  • the number of members in a household,
  • a family's gross annual income, and
  • criminal background checks.

Once an application has been submitted the agency will verify the information given to determine eligibility.


Unit Selection

  • A voucher will specify unit size and the maximum rent and utilities allowed
  • Maximum assistance paid will be the lesser of:
    • the payment standard, or
    • gross rent minus 30% of adjusted income
  • A voucher may be used at a holder's current residence if it qualifies
  • A selected unit must pass a physical inspection annually.

Subsidy can only be paid on a unit that has a passed inspection, a signed lease and a signed HAP contract. The resident is responsible for rent if a lease is signed before the unit passes inspection.


Roles and Responsibilities

There are three components to a Housing Choice Voucher:

  • the voucher
  • the lease
  • the HAP contract

The voucher is issued to an eligible applicant by WHEDA’s agent. This entitles the recipient to look for housing. By using the voucher, the family is agreeing to abide by program requirements such as:

  • paying their portion of the rent and utilities on time
  • maintaining the unit in good condition
  • notifying the agency of any changes to income or family composition

The lease is between the family and the landlord. Each party is responsible for the terms agreed to in the lease. The owner is responsible for screening a family’s suitability for tenancy.

The HAP contract is signed by the agency and the landlord. By signing the contract the landlord is agreeing to maintain decent, safe and sanitary housing at a reasonable rent and to providing the services agreed to in the lease.

The agent is responsible for verifying rent reasonableness, for paying the subsidized portion of the rent and for annually inspecting the unit. The agent also verifies and recertifies the family’s portion of the rent yearly. 

Moving with a Voucher

A WHEDA voucher holder may not move during their first year (twelve months) term. After that year, the family may move to any district that has a voucher program, subject to funding limitations. The WHEDA program limits moves to one every twelve months.

Informational Links

HUD Office of Public & Indian Housing