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WSA Blog: Independent Living

  • Section 8 Housing

Section 8 vouchers make independent living affordable for individuals with Williams syndrome, but the waiting lists are often 10 or 15 years. If you have questions about applying for Section 8 House Choice Vouchers (HCV), call your local Public Housing Authority/Agency (PHA) for specific detailed information. Each PHA is unique in how they offer their programs.  Section 8 HCV opportunities "open" for application and "close”. If you do NOT see your PHA listed in the link below, contact them directly and ask about their process. Ask if they foresee an opportunity to apply in the near future and if there is a way to be contacted when the application process is available.

To apply you must be either an adult (18+) or an emancipated minor. Emancipated minor means this young person takes on adult responsibilities before the age of 18 years of age (age of majority) -- in most states.

Below is a link to the HUD website, which will help you locate your PHA. Click on your state and scroll down the list. Remember that you can be on multiple PHA waitlists for a Section 8 HCV, so if you have more than one location where you are interested in living, contact the PHA in each of those areas. Remember you may have to live in their specific jurisdiction for an amount of time before you can move with the HCV. PHAs are typically listed by county name. However, if you live in a major metropolitan area it may have several PHAs serving specific areas of the city.  Conversely in an extremely rural area, 1 PHA many serve multiple counties.

If you are a young family, it is VERY ok to call and ask questions about their process. It isn’t a bad idea to get involved in housing initiatives.  Networking and helping out is a great opportunity to get to know people and options.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Laura Chesser, Professional Consultant on WSA's Adult Housing Initiative at lchesser@williams-syndrome.org