Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Where do I apply for Public Housing and Housing Choice Voucher?
Public Housing and Housing Choice Voucher can be applied for at the Kline Building, 2709 Jefferson Avenue, Newport News, VA 23607. The telephone number is 757-928-6060.
Can the Authority help if I need a job or want to further my education?
Yes! The Family Investment Center program is available to help with education and job training. This service is available for any resident of our Public Housing or Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) programs.
How do I receive help if I think I've been discriminated against in housing?
If you think you have been discriminated against, take the following steps:
- Call Rosa Terry, Office of Human Affairs local Fair Housing Officer at (757) 643-4085; or
- Call the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (1-800-669-9777 or 1-800-927-9275 TDD for the hearing impaired).
What are the hours of operation for the NNRHA?
Monday through Friday from 8:00 a. m.-5:00 p.m., except for holidays.
What number am I on the waiting list?
We do not provide applicants with a number. Your application is placed on a waiting list in the order it was received. We can only verify the date the application was received and whether or not you qualify for a preference based on the information provided.
Does NNRHA have programs to help me purchase a home?
Yes. In developing a qualified homeowner, the FSS program assists families in a self-help approach using positive techniques to resolve credit issues, and develops budgeting programs to establish and maintain a savings program for the future through an escrow account. In addition, the NNRHA Community Development Department offers homeownership opportunities through programs such as HOMEbuilder, HOMEplace and Neighborhood Stabilization Program.
What is the HCV Portability Program?
Portability provides families with an opportunity to move from one Housing Authority's jurisdiction to another jurisdiction throughout the United States. This feature allows eligible families to maximize their options and housing opportunities.
How Portability Works:
- Participant families assisted for at least one year under the voucher program in Newport News.
- Applicants who lived in the Housing Authority's jurisdiction (Newport News) when they applied for assistance.
- Must be in good standing with the Newport News Redevelopment and Housing Authority.
- May move anywhere in the United States where there is a HCV program.
- Will determine if there is a Housing Authority operating a Section 8 voucher program in the area selected by the family.
- Will contact the receiving Housing Authority by furnishing a letter of introduction and copy of the voucher.
- Notify initial Housing Authority of desire to transfer in writing.
- Allow 24-48 hours to process request.
- Contact the Housing Authority who is to receive your paper work for further instructions to complete the portability process.
Factors To Consider When Moving Under Portability:
- Location of family and friends
- Better schools
- Areas with low crime rates
- Better public services (i.e. transportation)
- Increased shopping areas
- Service centers (i.e. hospitals, day care centers, and recreational facilities)
- The receiving Housing Authority's Payment Standard are applicable.
- Different occupancy standards may change the bedroom size of your voucher.
- Employment Opportunities
How do I become a HCV Landlord?
For those of you who are not familiar with the initial lease up process, NNRHA would like to take this opportunity to explain what you can expect when working with our Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCV).
A prospective tenant may contact you searching for a unit to rent:
- They should be able to show you a voucher if they have HCV assistance. You should check the expiration date on the voucher to make sure it has not expired. If the voucher has expired, they may not have housing assistance or they may not have received their current voucher from our office. To find out you may call their assigned Housing Coordinator,
- The voucher has a bedroom size on it which designates the subsidy size they are eligible for. This is only a guideline. A client may rent a larger or smaller unit than they are eligible for as long as they can afford their portion of the rent, which is determined by the housing authority.
- If the voucher is active, screen the client carefully using the same guidelines you set for all persons inquiring about renting your unit and abide by the fair housing laws.
- If you approve the client to rent your unit:
Fill out the Request For Tenancy Approval (RFTA) packet in full and return it to the client who should carry it to the assisted housing office or fax it directly to us at (757) 247-7117.
- Once received, the paperwork will be date stamped and forwarded to the Assisted Housing Coordinator assigned to the client.
- The Assisted Housing Coordinator will check to make sure the paper work is completed in full and determine if the unit is affordable for this client. This means their portion does not exceed 40% of their adjusted monthly income towards rent and utilities.
HCV Landlord Briefing Program
Landlord Briefings are conducted twice a month at the Kline Office located at 2709 Jefferson Avenue. These briefings are designed to inform perspective landlords about program rules and regulations.
These briefings are very informal in a relaxed atmosphere and everyone benefits from different concerns and questions from the landlords in attendance. The briefing information sessions covers the following topics, but are not limited to:
- Housing Quality Standards (HQS)
- Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) Contract
- Family Obligations
- Payment to Landlord
- Landlord Obligations
- Lease Requirements
- Request for Tenancy Approval (RTA)
- Initial Inspection
- Program Fraud
- Fair Housing
- Reasonable Accommodation requirements
- Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) restrictions
A perspective landlord may call either 928-6067 or 928-6060 to inquire about the next scheduled landlord briefing.
How can I get a wheel chair ramp built?
The NNRHA Rehabilitation Division administers assistance in the form of a loan or grant to facilitate accessibility improvements in residential properties throughout the City of Newport News which are either owned by low to moderate-income families or leased long-term to such families.NNRHA offers 0-1% loans and grants of up to $8,000 to low to moderate income qualified residents. For more information please call NNRHA at 757-928-2657.
Household income is less than 80% of area median income, adjusted for household size, as determined annually by U.S. Department of HUD (see attached).
How can I get repairs done to my house if I can't afford them?
The Newport News Redevelopment and Housing Authority makes available various resources in the form of a loan and/or grants to assist low to moderate income families address various types of home repairs. Such repairs may include roofing, hazardous electrical wiring, plumbing, heating and air conditioning, insulation and handicapped access issues.
NNRHA offers 1-2% loans, deferred loans and grants of up to $25,000 to low to moderate income qualified homeowners for the rehabilitation of their owner occupied homes.For more information please call our NNRHA at 757-928-2657.
Eligibility: Applicant must own and occupy the property as their principal residence for at least one year or more. Mobile homes do not qualify for assistance.
Income Limits: Household income is less than 80% of area median income, adjusted for household size, as determined annually by U.S. Department of HUD (see table attached).
Can I apply for Section 8/Housing Choice Voucher Program (HCV) If I live out of state?
If you are already a Section Eight Housing participant in another state you can simply transfer your voucher to NNRHA. Have your current Section 8 office fax your paperwork to the NNRHA Portable Coordinator at 757-247-7117. If you do not already have Section 8 assistance you must schedule an appointment to apply if the waiting list is open.
Is the Section Eight/HCV Program waiting list open for new applications?
No, the waiting list is closed. No date has been set to reopen the waiting list. It may be closed for up to 3 years. When the waiting list reopens an advertisement will appear in the local section of the Daily Press and in the Tidewater Hispanic and Korean Post. This information is also available on our website at www.nnrha.com
What happens when my application for HCV assistance is completed and I have done my intake interview?
After you have completed the application and interview, your application is processed. Your eligibility will be determined during this process. Also, during the application process criminal background checks are performed, income sources are verified and current and former residency will be verified. Once eligibility is determined you will receive a letter in the mail that provides you the final determination on your application.
How long will I have to wait for a Housing Choice Voucher?
The wait will depend on the date and time your application was received, how quickly vouchers are turned over by current clients, the number of applicants on the waiting list and the amount of funds available. The wait may be as long as 5 years.
What number am I on the waiting list of HCV assistance?
All approved applicants are selected in order of placement from the wait list with consideration given to our locally approved preferences. There are 4 preferences: involuntarily displaced or homeless; living in substandard housing; paying more than 50% of household income for rent and utilities; or head of household is a veteran or spouse of a veteran. Your position is subject to change at anytime as applicants are added or removed from the list.
Are there any exceptions to the HCV or Public Housing waiting lists for housing emergencies?
No, NNRHA does not have emergency or immediate housing. We must follow our Administrative Plan and Admissions and Continued Occupancy Policy as well as federal regulations when accepting applications and managing the waiting list. All applicants must go through the same procedure and wait their turn on the waiting list. However, if you call our office at 757-928-6060, we can provide you with a list of private subsidized complexes that may be taking applications.
What happens when my application for Public Housing is completed and I have done my intake interview?
After you have completed the application and interview, your application is processed and your eligibility determined. During the application process criminal background checks are performed, income sources are verified and current and former residency will be verified. Once eligibility is determined you will receive a letter in the mail that provides you the final determination on your application.
How long will I have to wait to lease an apartment in Public Housing?
The wait will depend on the date and time your application was received, local preference, the number of applicants on the waiting list and the number of vacancies available for a particular bedroom size.
What number am I on the Public Housing waiting list?
All of our approved applicants are selected in order of placement from the wait list with consideration given to our locally approved preferences. There are four preferences involuntarily displaced or homeless, living in substandard housing, paying more than 50% of household income for rent and utilities or head of household is a veteran, or spouse of a veteran. Your position on the list is subject to change at anytime as applicants are added or removed from the list.
What happens when my name comes up to the top of the Public Housing list?
You will be contacted by the NNRHA Leasing Coordinator and offered an available housing unit that meets your family size. Your information must be current prior to leasing a unit.
How can I place a home in the Section 8 rental program?
If you are interested in participating in the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8) as a landlord, please call 757-928-6060 and request the time of the next Landlord Briefing.
Does my unit (apartment complex) have to be pre-approved before I can rent to Housing Choice Voucher clients?
The unit does not have to be inspected prior to screening a prospective tenant. The unit must be inspected and pass a HQS (Housing Quality Standards) Inspection prior to the tenant taking possession of the unit (moving in).
When does the landlord receive the first subsidy check after renting to a Section 8 tenant?
NNRHA has up to 60 days to make the first subsidy payment. We must have a signed copy of the lease agreement with the tenant signature and landlord signature. On average, most initial payments are made within 30 days.
How long does it take for my unit to be approved for a Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) tenant?
Once a Request for Tenancy Approval (RFTA) packet is completed and returned to the Housing Authority, an inspection for the unit will be requested. An inspector will call to schedule an inspection within 5 business days.
If the rent I charge a Section 8 tenant is more than the NNRHA will approve, can the tenant pay the difference?
No, a tenant may not pay any additional monies out of pocket to the landlord. All rents are tested to determine if they are reasonable. Rent reasonableness determinations are conducted by the Housing Quality Standards Inspections Department.
I am 17 and live in NNRHA housing and wish to attend the GED class. Is this possible?
You must be 18 years to attend the GED preparation class. Interested individuals are referred to outside agencies that offer GED prep classes. Interested persons may contact the Family Investment Center (FIC) located at 600 C Ridley Circle. The contact number for FIC is 757-928-3680.
The house I am renting has caught fire/hit by a car and is damaged; I need to contact NNRHA because I am renting with Housing Choice Voucher Program assistance but it is the weekend/evening. Who do I call?
You need to contact your landlord as a HCV client and then follow up on the next business day by calling your Section 8 Coordinator so one of the housing inspectors can come out to the property. Our responsibility is to issue move papers if the house/property was condemned or to meet with the landlord if the repairs can be completed with the client in place but the ultimate responsibility is the private landlord.
What is the Family Investment Center (FIC) at Ridley Place?
The Family Investment Center assists public housing residents in becoming self-sufficient by providing better access to job training and educational and employment opportunities. The center has a computer lab with 8 workstations. Microsoft Office applications are installed on each PC. Available services include job lead assistance and follow up, job readiness, employability skills workshops, budgeting classes, free tax preparation, transportation services and a home ownership program. The FIC telephone number is 757-928-3680.
What is the Moderate Rehabilitation Single Room Occupancy (SRO) Program and how do I apply?
The SRO is designed to provide housing units suitable for occupancy by eligible low income homeless single individuals. An appointment can be scheduled by calling the NNRHA Public Assisted Housing Monday through Friday 9am until 4pm at 757-928-6060.
Does NNRHA offer any other affordable housing?
NNRHA accepts applications for Great Oak Senior Housing and Phoenix Village I and Phoenix Village II, Housing for the Disabled. Applications are accepted when the wait list is open for appointment. You may contact the rental office for availability at 757-591-3282.
What documentation should be provided at the intake interview?
On the day of you intake interview please bring birth certificates for all family members for all household members listed on the application, social security cards for all household members listed on the application, valid picture for anyone age 18 and older, marriage license, income verification for all sources of income received, current lease or rent receipts, current utility bills, current bank statements, current mailing address for employer, landlord and child care provider, and child support verification.
Are there income limits for the assisted housing programs offered thru NNRHA?
Yes, there are income limits in effect for both the Public Housing program and the Housing Choice Voucher program. The income limits are reviewed annually, updated, and published by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Does NNRHA offer tutoring classes for residents of public housing?
Tutoring is offered at the Neighborhood Network Lab, Marshall Recreation Center, and the Boys and Girls Club of the Virginia Peninsula which has sites located on various public housing properties. The telephone number for information is 757-928-6192.
I live in public housing. Who do I call to request assistance with a maintenance problem?
Tenants who are experiencing maintenance issues should call 757-247-0484 to place a work order.
How do I purchase a home through the NNRHA if I am a low income resident of Newport News?
There are 2 programs available to low/moderate income residents of Newport News. For information on homes the NNRHA rehabilitates for re-sale call 757-928-2657. For information on new homes call 757-928-2656.
What programs are available to me to purchase a home through the NNRHA if I am a NNRHA public housing resident or Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) client?
The NNRHA has 2 programs to assist residents and clients with homeownership: The Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) Family Self Sufficiency Program (information available at 757-928-6060); and the Public Housing Family Self Program (information available at 757-928-3684).
How do I apply for the Community Development Block Grant program?
The purpose of the program is to develop viable communities by providing decent housing, a suitable living environment, and expanding economic opportunities, principally for persons of low- and moderate-income. The Newport News Redevelopment and Housing Authority accept proposals for funding on an annual basis for eligible activities.
Please contact Ms. Lee at (757) 928-2655 for information on the program and application process.
What resources are available to assist businesses in Newport News?
The Newport News Urban Development Action Grant (NNUDAG) is a loan/grant program unique to Newport News which provides capital to small and medium-sized for-profit businesses. The goals of this loan program are twofold: broaden the city's economic base and stimulate job creation for low and moderate income persons.
Contact: Brandon Waddell (Commercial Loan Manager) Newport News Redevelopment and Housing Authority (NNRHA) at 757-928-2650 or firstname.lastname@example.org.