Housing Choice Voucher Program

The housing choice voucher program is the federal government's major program for assisting very low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing in the private market. Since housing assistance is provided on behalf of the family or individual, participants are able to find their own housing, including single-family homes, townhouses and apartments.

The participant is free to choose any housing that meets the requirements of the program and is not limited to units located in subsidized housing projects.

The Melrose Housing Authority (MHA) is currently authorized to assist 301 households on the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program. The MHA receives federal funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to administer the voucher program.

A family that is issued a housing voucher is responsible for finding a suitable housing unit of the family's choice where the owner agrees to rent under the program. This unit may include the family's present residence. Rental units must meet minimum standards of health and safety, as determined by the MHA.

A housing subsidy is paid to the landlord directly by the MHA on behalf of the participating family. The family then pays the difference between the actual rent charged by the landlord and the amount subsidized by the program.

MHA requires an application to be submitted. It can be done in person or online to determine eligibility here at the MHA Main Office. You can also create a free account on AffordableHousing.com, and then search for open Waiting lists, you will find “Section 8 Centralized Waiting List”.

MHA Preferences are available to qualified veterans, and/or applicants who currently work or reside in Melrose.

For a more detailed explanation HCV program, please check out HUD's HCV Web Page.

HCV Payment Standards

2024 Payment Standards Utility Allowances
2023 Payment Standards Utility Allowances
2022 Payment Standards Utility Allowances
2021 Payment Standards Utility Allowances

Rent Increase Request Forms

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