Rural Section 8 Housing

The Rural Section 8 Program helps families to secure affordable, safe, and sanitary housing by paying a portion of the rent in an approved dwelling unit. HRDC administers Section 8 in Big Horn, Carbon, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, and greater-Yellowstone County (not including the City of Billings).

Who is eligible? 

Families and individuals with incomes at or below 50% of the area median family income for their county are eligible. Income guidelines can be found here .

How much will my portion of the rent be?

Your portion of the rent will be determined based on the size of your family and your income. Normally, you’ll pay 30%-40% of your income for rent and the Section 8 program will pay the other portion directly to the landlord.

How do I apply?

First, apply online at www.housing.mt.gov or complete a one-page preliminary application, available here . Mail paper application to Montana Department of Commerce, Housing Assistance Bureau, Section 8 Housing Program, PO Box 200545, Helena, MT 59620-0545. It is recommended to complete the online application to ensure prompt receipt and processing. You do not need to submit any verification at this time.

If approved, you will be placed on a waiting list. Then, when selected from the waiting list, you must attend an orientation where you’ll complete a federal application and your eligibility will be verified.

Can I check my status or position on the wait list?

You can check your status or position number anytime at www.waitlistcheck.com .

What do I bring to the orientation?

At the orientation, you’ll have a one-on-one meeting with an eligibility specialist. Please bring:

  • Social Security cards for  all household members
  • Birth Certificates for all household members
  • Valid photo ID’s for all household members over age 18
  • Verification for all earned and unearned income for the past 30 days for all household members (paystubs, TANF, Per Capita, Child Support, Food Stamps, Social Security, Pensions, etc.
  • Banks statements for the past 30 days

If you are determined eligible and your application is complete, you’ll be issued a Housing Choice Voucher and will have 60 days to find a suitable unit. The unit will need to be inspected by the HRDC Housing Inspector to ensure it meets the housing quality standards.

How do I find a Section 8 unit to rent?

You may use your current unit or you may shop for a suitable unit in the local housing market. The unit must undergo an inspection and meet housing quality standards before approved.

What if my family size changes when I’m in a Section 8 unit?

You are required to inform the HRDC Section 8 field office of any changes in your family size within 30 days of the change. Failure to do so may result in termination from the Section 8 program.

What if my income changes or I no longer receive Child Support? 

You are required to inform the HRDC Section 8 field office of any change in your family income (job loss, raise, benefit change, etc.) within 30 days of the change. Your rent portion may increase or decrease depending on the change.  Failure to inform us of the change may result in termination from the Section 8 program.

I’m in a Section 8 unit, but want to move to a different unit. What do I need to do?

You are required to complete a 12-month lease, then give the landlord and the HRDC Section 8 field office a 30-day written notice of your intent to move. You may continue to receive Section 8 rental assistance in another dwelling unit as long as the unit undergoes an inspection, meets housing quality standards, and meets the rent limitations for the area.

For more information:

Email: info@hrdc7.org
Phone:  406-247-4732 or 800-433-1411

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This project is funded in whole or in part under a Contract with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services. The statements herein do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Department.