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Public Housing and Section 8 in Kansas City

Public housing

Public housing or Section 8 (subsidized) housing can help you find an affordable place to live.   Here's what you need to know. Learn some basics about section 8 or public housing on the Beehive.

What's the difference between section 8 and public housing?

Public housing and section 8 are actually two different programs.  For public housing, your landlord is your local housing authority, or public housing agency (PHA).  You live on their property.  The lower your income, the lower your rent.
For section 8, you have a voucher that can be used at any qualified apartments or houses to rent.  Usually, you agree to pay 30% of your income to the landlord, and the government will make up the difference.  Unlike being approved for public housing, you can use this voucher in other states.  
There are certain areas where you can get Section 8 housing without a voucher.  The drawback is you would not have a voucher that could work across state lines.  The advantage would be that the waiting list could be shorter.
In both cases, the rent you pay is based off your income.  If you have no income, you can still qualify for public housing or section 8.  The currently homeless go to the top of the waiting list.

Do I qualify?

You qualify for public housing or Section 8 if you are elderly, disabled, or low-income.  You can qualify even if you have a felony conviction or a history of mental illness.  
However, if your felony conviction was a drug charge or aggravated assault, this will disqualify you.  If it has been five years or more since you finished your sentence, you will still qualify.  You have the right to an appeal if they disqualify you as this point.

# of Persons

Low Income

Very Low Income

30% of Median

































In general the income category you will fall in to will affect the rent you pay.
To learn about income qualifications for Independence, Missouri, call (816) 836 9200 Ext. 301.

How and where do I apply?

The Housing Authority of Kansas City accepts applications for section 8 or public housing every Thursday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. at the Clymer Community Center.  It is only on Thursday.  Plan on arriving early because there will probably be a line.
The Clymer Community Center is located at: 
1301 Vine
Kansas City, Missouri.64106

How long does it take to be approved? 

After applying, you are put on the waiting list for either public housing or section 8.  There is a big waiting list for both programs.  
According to the Housing Authority of Kansas City, the wait for public housing is 1-2 years.  The wait for section 8 is 1-3 years. However, it depends on the size of the waiting list at the time.  You are considered by when you applied.  However, if you are currently homeless, you'll be put near the top of the waiting list.

What if I need help right away?

Learn about emergency shelters, utility assistance, and remember you can call the homeless hotline at (816) 474-4599.
United Way 2-1-1 will connect you to the resources you need.  Call them at 2-1-1 or (816)474-5112 on some cell phones. 

What if I have more questions? 

Call the Housing Authority of Kansas City at 816-968-4100.  If you are on the waiting list and have questions, you can call them at:  816-968-4150.

If I get approved, where can I live?

For public housing, here is the list of public housing developments in Kansas City.
For section 8, look up qualified apartments or houses to rent on social serve or the HUD website.


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