How Federal Incentives Can Increase Access for Section 8 Recipients

Landlords are the focus of a proposed bill that would provide extra perks for accepting Housing Choice vouchers.

1 minute read

May 28, 2021, 7:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Suburban multi-family

apiguide / Shutterstock

The reluctance of landlords to rent to recipients of the federal housing assistance program known as Section 8, writes Kriston Capps in Bloomberg CityLab, "locks families into cycles of poverty and segregation" as "landlords in more-affluent neighborhoods especially tend to hold households with assistance at bay." A bill proposed by Delaware Senator Chris Coons and North Dakota Senator Kevin Cramer would create more incentives for participating in Section 8. "the bill is filled with carrots for property owners who have fled the program, as well as straightforward cash benefits for others who decide to join."

"The bill draws on recent research into what landlords want — a critical but often overlooked question in discussions about housing aid." Landlord incentives include signing bonuses and inspection reciprocity, as well as a hotline which will connect landlords to HUD. Increasing the number of landlords that accept Housing Choice Vouchers, says Sen. Coons, will give more Americans "greater choices and opportunities in finding a home to build their foundation upon." With the end of the federal eviction moratorium looming and many households teetering on the edge of homelessness, the bill could bring welcome reform to "a federal housing assistance program that has long been beleaguered by years-long waiting lists and administrative burdens."

Thursday, May 20, 2021 in Bloomberg CityLab

Chicago Intercity Rail

Amtrak Ramping Up Infrastructure Projects

Thanks to federal funding from the 2021 infrastructure act, the agency plans to triple its investment in infrastructure improvements and new routes in the next two years.

September 25, 2023 - Smart Cities Dive

View of Interstate 205 bridge over Columbia River with Mt. Hood in background.

The Unceremonious Death of a Freeway Expansion Project

The end of an Oregon freeway project didn't get much fanfare, but the victory is worth celebrating.

September 19, 2023 - Streetsblog USA

Google maps street view of San Francisco alleyway.

Ending Downtown San Francisco’s ‘Doom Loop’

A new public space project offers an ambitious vision—so why is the city implementing it at such a small scale?

September 26, 2023 - Fast Company

Aerial view of coastal development and bright blue ocean in Kaua'i, Hawai'i.

Kaua’i County Uses Long-Range Models to Mandate Resiliency Standards

The county requires builders to assess potential flood risks using models that account for sea level rise projected as far out as 2100.

September 28 - Smart Cities Dive

Semi truck driving down freeway with twilight sky in background.

California Governor Vetoes Autonomous Truck Ban

Gov. Newsom called the new law unnecessary, citing existing efforts by state regulators to develop new rules around autonomous trucking.

September 28 - Wired

Roadside motel with turquoise room doors in Tucumcari, New Mexico.

Low-Barrier Motel Shelter Is a Success—But Not an Easy One

Many guests at Motels4Now are on their second or third stays—but staff say that's doesn't equal failure, and the numbers bear that out.

September 28 - Shelterforce Magazine

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.