If I have a felony will that automatically make me ineligible? What about rental history or other criminal activity?

No, felonies do not immediately make applicants ineligible. Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher applicants will be screened for program suitability. We review criminal activity related to drug, disturbance and/or violent activity documented through police reports, Landlord references or convictions. This will include credit, landlord reference, and criminal background checks. (Criminal background checks are requested for all residents 18 years or older as part of pre-interview screening.) Sex offenders under lifetime registration requirements are disqualified under federal law.


Reasons for disqualification include, but are not limited to:

  • Debts owed to previous landlords or Public Housing Authorities
  • Delinquent utility debts
  • Drug or alcohol related arrests or evictions
  • Gang related activity
  • Past evictions or poor landlord references
  • Property tax liens
  • Violent crimes

Efforts to repay past delinquencies and successful completion of drug or alcohol abuse programs will be taken into account when determining tenant suitability. Lack of credit history is not cause for disqualification. 

VAWA Protection

If you are denied admission, you have the right to request a Grievance Hearing. Under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), you cannot be denied because you were a victim of domestic violence, stalking, or sexual assault. If you are seeking VAWA protection, download and fill out the Emergency Transfer Request form (PDF) and find information concerning your rights (PDF).

Show All Answers

1. Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Frequently Asked Questions
2. How will I know if the Section 8 Waiting List is open? When will it open again?
3. How will I know if I am on the Waiting List for Section 8 HCV or not?
4. If I need help with the Haven Connect Portal, what can I do?
5. I've applied for Section 8. What is my status or number on the Waiting List?
6. What is the Waiting List screening process? When will I receive a voucher?
7. What do you mean "preference"?
8. I applied and have not received a letter or a phone call. Will I?
9. How do I obtain a Login for the Applicant Portal? I have lost my confirmation number, what do I do?
10. After I apply, why does it take so long to receive assistance?
11. How do I change my address or phone number? How do I add another household member? How do I update my income/report a new job?
12. Why should I update my application?
13. If I have a felony will that automatically make me ineligible? What about rental history or other criminal activity?
14. How will I know what size of home I can apply for with a Section 8 voucher?
15. My family includes citizens and/or permanent resident non-citizens. My family also includes non-citizens who are not Permanent Residents. Are we still eligible for Section 8/Low-Income Public Housing?
16. What would my rent be with a voucher?
17. I have been denied. What can I do?
18. Where are the homes I can rent?
19. I have been discriminated against in my search for housing. What can I do?