Collaboration is key. And without participating landlords, we couldn’t offer rental assistance programs in Scott County, impacting the ability of over 500 households to afford their home. Scott County CDA rental programs are a partnership between the community members we serve, our funders, and the 140 landlords that participate in our Housing Choice Voucher Program. With the current low vacancy rates and high demand for rental units, our landlord partners hold the keys to maintaining and increasing affordable housing options in Scott County. Thank you to all of our current landlord partners!
Frequently Asked Questions
Scott County’s housing resources haven’t kept up with our growth, and the ability for people to find a home is increasingly difficult:
- Wage and fixed income increases haven’t kept pace with the high cost of housing, low vacancy rates (2% across all rentals; 0% for shallow/deep subsidy)
- Nearly 26% of Scott County households were cost-burdened (paying more than 30% of their income on rent) from 2011-2015, and nearly 50% of all renters were cost-burdened.
- A limited number of affordable housing options resulted in a 26% increase in homeless households between 2016-2018
- Since 2000, renter households have seen an over 14% rise in monthly rent since 2000 with only a 6% increase in median renter income.
We need your help, and when you become a landlord partner, you commit to ensuring that our citizens have opportunities to live and work right here in Scott County.
Landlords participating in the Housing Choice Voucher/Section 8 Program and becoming partner landlords are increasing the number of affordable housing units in our community. We work to make the process as easy as possible for you! There are 3 requirements to enroll in the program:
- Complete CDA paperwork during the initial move and annually.
- Report to the CDA any changes in the rent agreement, lease terms, or lease violations.
- Provide safe, adequate housing that meets Housing Quality Standards (HQS) Inspection Standards. Inspection occurs at initial move-in and annually (you will receive a notice).
In addition to committing to helping make affordable homes possible in Scott County, there are three primary advantages to our partnership:
- Timely rent payments. In 2018, the average rent assistance payment to partner landlords was $700/month ($8,400 per year).
- Free Lunch and Learn workshops: Speakers present on housing-related topics (Fair Housing, Crime Prevention, Education Maintenance, etc.), with lunch provided to current and prospective partner landlords.
- Mediation and Support: CDA Housing Specialists work between clients and landlords to increase effective communication regarding tenant or property concerns to prevent lease infractions and improve the success of the tenancy.
Click here for information provided to HCV participants.
You can expect the CDA rent assistance payment on the 1st of the month. We provide automatic deposits.
At the initial move-in of the tenant in the program or at the annual recertification. A notice will be sent to you of the inspection date by mail.
Housing Quality Inspection (HQS) is a type of inspection required by the CDA and HUD. Please click here to view the checklist for detailed information.
You will be given notice of the failed items, and we will schedule a re-inspection. Missing smoke detectors and CO2 detectors are the most frequent inspection fails.
After the landlord has conducted the tenant screening process and has approved the applicant for the rental unit, the Section 8 Voucher holder will give the landlord a Request for Tenancy Approval (RFTA) form to complete. The RFTA form asks questions about the rental unit, including unit address, contract rent amount, security deposit amount, description and year the building was built, utilities included and excluded in the rent, and landlord contact information. The Section 8 Participant must return the completed RFTA to the CDA no later than the 15th of the month, prior to the month they want their rental assistance to begin. (Example: June 15th for a July 1st lease date.)
Once the CDA receives the completed RFTA form:
- The CDA will check to see that the rental unit is “affordable” for the participant in accordance with Agency Payment Standards.
- The Housing Authority will schedule and mail an inspection notice of the Housing Quality Standards (HQS) Inspection date. The rental unit must pass an inspection before the Housing Authority will release Housing Assistance Payments to the landlord on the tenant’s behalf.
- The landlord is required to provide a copy of the unexecuted lease to the Housing Authority along with the Request for Tenancy Approval form. Once the unit has passed an HQS inspection and all paperwork has been approved, the landlord will sign a Housing Assistance Payment Contract with the CDA.
In Scott County, the contract rent, plus utilities, must be within the payment standards, and you can view them on HousingLink here. These are set by using amounts as determined by HUD.
The landlord decides who pays for which utilities. If the tenant is responsible for some or all utilities, this must be indicated on the Request for Tenancy Approval form. The Housing Authority uses the Utility Allowance form to determine the average monthly utility expense for the family. The contract rent is determined affordable for the Section 8 Program when rent plus utility expenses are equal to or less than the Payment Standard for the appropriate bedroom size.
The Section 8 Participant pays 30% of their monthly-adjusted income towards rent to the landlord. This will vary for each family, and the rent portions may fluctuate during the year according to the family’s income. The Housing Authority pays the difference directly to the landlord each month.
If you are willing to work with the Section 8 Program, we suggest you use the following phrase in your advertisement: Rental Assistance Accepted.
Yes, those with a Section 8 Voucher can move from county to county and state to state with their rental assistance as long as they are in good standing with the CDA and the previous landlord. The participant must be current on their rent to be in good standing.
You Spoke. We Listened.
The process for being a landlord in the Housing Choice Voucher/Section 8 Program is similar to the experience of renting to an individual or family in the private market. Landlords still screen and select tenants, maintain the unit with the same high standards, enforce the lease, and collect the monthly rent.
Through focus groups with potential landlords, maintenance and unit upkeep was the #1 reason landlords were hesitant to participate in the Housing Choice Voucher/Section 8 Program. In response to the concerns, Scott County CDA worked with the University of Minnesota to launch a Housing Maintenance Education Program for CDA participants. This program provides resources and tools to your tenants that support cleaner, better-maintained units. Additionally, these resources are culturally responsive and offered in different languages.
The CDA will also partner with landlords to decide how to implement these resources with their tenants best, whether it is at the property, during inspections, and/or at annual recertifications with CDA staff. If you’d like to learn more, please contact us.
Landlord Section 8 Expectations
Inspection Information Form
HUD Inspection Checklist
Housing Assistance Payments Contract
Request for Tenancy Approval Form
Notice of Proposed
Women Act Info
Landlord Partner FAQ
MN Attorney Generals Landlords Rights and Responsibilities