Information for Landlords

Section 8 Landlord Information

The City of Tempe Housing Services Division provides rent subsidy to eligible very low- income individuals and families through the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program.

The Program was designed to provide individuals and families with the same choices as other renters.
Once an individual or family receives their Housing Choice Voucher, they will have 60 days to find suitable housing that meets their own particular needs and Program requirements.

After the individual or family locates a suitable apartment or house, the Housing Authority inspects it to be sure it qualifies as decent, safe and sanitary housing.

  • The individual will sign a Lease with their Landlord.
  • The Landlord will sign a contract with the Housing Authority.
  • The Housing Authority will pay part of the rent directly to the Landlord.

On the Housing Choice Voucher Program, the tenant pays approximately 30% of their adjusted gross income, depending on the actual rent of the unit they find.

Rental Unit Listing/Unlisting

If you would like your rental unit(s) placed on the Available Rentals list for the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program, or to be removed from the list, please complete the following form, print it and fax it to 480-858-7703:

Rental Unit Listing/Unlisting

Selection of Tenants

It is the landlord's responsibility to screen and select prospective tenants.
Tempe Housing Services may give the following information to the prospective landlord if the landlord submits a request in writing: 

1. The prospective tenant's current address.
2. The name and address of the landlord at the family's current and prior address.
3. If the landlord provides a signed release form from the tenant, Tempe Housing Services will release information on past claims filed against the tenant, court evictions against the tenant and landlord terminations for lease violations.

 
It is strongly recommended that a landlord obtain references on each prospective Section 8 AND non-Section 8 tenant.

Note: A landlord, in the selection or approval of a tenant, in the provision of services, or in any other manner, can not discriminate against any person on the grounds of race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, handicap, age, or because of membership in a class such as unmarried mothers, recipients of public assistance, ect.

Security Deposits

The Section 8 Program does not regulate security deposits. Landlords may charge Section 8 tenants the same amount of security deposit that is charged to non-Section 8 tenants. This means if a landlord normally charges all tenants $200.00 for a security deposit, a Section 8 tenant will be required to pay the same amount. The only restrictions on the security deposit are that a landlord can not charge a Section 8 tenant more than what they can charge non-Section 8 tenants.

The security deposit must be administered in accordance with Arizona State Law, (Arizona Residential Landlord & Tenant Act, Arizona Revised Statutes, Title 33, Chapter 10 and Title 12, Chapter 8, Article 4).

Upon termination of the Lease Agreement, the deposit is to be refunded or applied to any damages or rent delinquency in accordance with State Law (Residential Landlord and Tenant Act, Article 2, Section 33-1321) and the Tenancy Addendum (Section 12).

Late Fees

Tenants will be responsible for the payment of late fees if the Landlord charges late fees for their non-Section 8 tenants also.

Landlords charging late fees must provide all tenants with a copy of their written policy regarding late fees. Housing Services must be subject to late fees also if the Housing Assistance Payment is delayed due to circumstances within the Housing Authority's control.

Tempe Housing Services will not pay late fees on payments that are late due to paperwork being delayed by tenants and/or landlords, mail delivery problems or City of Tempe accounts payable system problems. These items are not within our control. Delays in payments caused by Tempe Housing Services processing errors are within our control and will be subject to the late fees.

Tempe Housing Services housing assistance payments for the first of the month begin to be processed approximately the 20th day of the previous month; (i.e. the cut-off date for December lst payments is November 20th). Any contracts executed after the 20th of the month will not receive the housing assistance payments on the first day of the month. Payments for those contracts will be processed and paid within 30 days from the Contract execution date, (usually by the 2nd week of the month). Keep in mind that a Contract is not fully executed until the landlord signs it and Tempe Housing Services signs it.

Once a landlord is entered in the payment system, all future checks should be received by the first day of the month. Payments for the first of the month are mailed from the City of Tempe approximately on the last working Friday of the current month.

Note: Periodically there are situations where tenants have lost their source of income late in the month. Because their portion of the rent is calculated on their income, the Housing Services will make all possible attempts to process rent adjustments reported by the 20th day of the month so that the tenant's portion of the rent will be decreased for the first of the month.

In these instances, a notification will be sent advising the landlord that a partial housing assistance payment is being made by the lst day of the month due to the tenant's decreased income. The tenant will be paying the new decreased tenant rent on the first day of the month. The balance of the new increased housing assistance payment will then be paid in approximately two weeks. These types of situations also will be subject to the late fees from Tempe Housing Services.

Landlord Certification/Request for Tenancy Approval

Once you have selected a tenant for your unit and have agreed to participate in the Program, you must complete a Landlord Certification. This form is your certification that you are the legal owner (or agent) of the property and you understand the regulations regarding who is eligible to reside in the unit, security deposits, total tenant payments, reporting vacancies, computer matching, contract violations and your obligations regarding Housing Quality Standards. The tenant will supply you with this form.

In addition to the Landlord Certification, both you and your prospective tenant must fully complete and sign a Request for Tenancy Approval. This form is, as its name implies, a request to Housing Services for approval of a lease at the property listed on the form.

You must list the date the unit was constructed, number of bedrooms in the unit, the date you and the tenant wish the lease to begin, the type of unit, who is responsible for utilities and the requested rent for the unit (include city sales tax).

In addition, you must supply the name and business address of the complex (if applicable), the property owner's name and address and the Tax Identification Number or Social Security Number of the party whose name will appear on the monthly housing assistance check. In addition, the owner must attach documentation verifying proof of ownership or management agreement. The tenant will supply you with this form also.

Be sure all the information on both the Landlord Certification and Request for Tenancy Approval is complete and correct. The tenant must return them to her/his caseworker. When Housing Services receives your Request for Tenancy Approval, it will be reviewed to determine if the unit is the correct size and the proposed rent is approvable. If the Request for Tenancy Approval and proposed lease are in order, an inspection of the unit will be scheduled.

Landlords use their own Lease, and there is a Section 8 Tenancy Addendum included in the Housing Assistance Payment Contract. The Tenancy Addendum contains HUD's required Program language. If there are conflicts between the landlord's lease and the lease addendum, the Lease Addendum language will prevail.

Inspections

The inspection is to insure the unit is in decent, safe and sanitary condition. The unit must meet HUD's Housing Quality Standards, the City of Tempe Uniform Housing Code and Tempe Rental Code.

The following is a list of some of the basic items necessary for a unit to pass inspection:
  •  
 smoke detector(s) are present and in working condition;
  •  
 provisions for escape for the handicapped in case of fire;
  •  
 no electrical hazards, inside or outside of the unit;
  •  
 all operable windows open properly and lock;
  •  
 for evaporative cooled units: one operable window must have a screen;
  •  
 all doors open and close properly; those accessible from the outside lock properly;
  •  
 all interior and exterior surfaces are free from cracking, scaling, peeling, chipping and loose paint;
  •  
 all appliances and bathroom facilities are clean and in working condition;
  •  
 bathrooms have an openable window or a working vent system;
  •  
 all bedrooms have at least one openable window;
  •  
 heating and cooling equipment are safe and adequate;
  •  
 hot water heater is safely located, equipped and installed;
  •  
 plumbing, electrical and gas systems are safe and adequate;
  •  
 no evidence of infestation;
  •  
 site and neighborhood are free from conditions which would endanger the health
and safety of residents.

NOTE: HQS Standards have been amended to allow microwave ovens to be substituted for a tenant-supplied oven and stove/range. A microwave oven may be substituted for an owner-supplied oven and stove/range if the tenant agrees and microwave ovens are furnished instead of an oven and stove/range to both subsidized and unsubsidized tenants in the same complex or premises.

If serious violations exist, the unit will fail the inspection and will require a re-inspection after the violations are corrected. Minor violations will allow the unit to pass with a 30-Day Maintenance Request. This allows the tenant to move in and begin receiving housing assistance and give the landlord 30 days to correct the violations.

A unit must completely pass the inspection, or pass with a 30-day Maintenance Request, before a Lease and Contract will become effective.

After the initial inspection, the unit must be inspected at least annually to determine if the landlord and tenant are maintaining it, in a decent, safe and sanitary condition. Special inspections may be conducted throughout the year at the request of the landlord, tenant, Tempe Housing Services and/or HUD.

When an annual or special inspection reveals the unit is in violation of Housing Quality Standards, the landlord is responsible for correcting the deficiencies, regardless of whether or not the tenant is held responsible for payment of the repairs. Failure to comply with the requested action will result in either an abatement of housing assistance payments or a termination of the Contract and Lease.

The owner is not responsible for a breach of the Housing Quality Standards that is not caused by the owner. The family is responsible for a breach of the HQS that is caused by any of the following:

The family fails to pay for any utilities that the tenant is responsible for paying;
The family fails to provide and maintain any appliances the owner is not required to provide;
Any member of the household or guest damages the unit or premises (damages beyond normal wear and tear).

If the HQS breach caused by the family is life threatening, the family must correct the defect within no more than 30 calendar days.

The Tempe Housing Services may terminate assistance for a family because of HQS violations caused by the family.

If payments are abated, all failed deficiencies must be corrected before payments are resumed. If the landlord refuses to correct the deficiencies, the Tempe Housing Services will terminate the Lease and Contract. Payments that are abated will not be reimbursed.

Lease Agreements and Contracts

Once a unit passes the inspection, a Lease Agreement and a Housing Choice Voucher Contract including the Lease Addendum will be executed.

If there are conflicts between the landlord's lease and the Tenancy Addendum, the Tenancy Addendum will prevail. A proposed copy of the lease agreement will need to be submitted with the Request for Lease Approval so the Housing Authority, can review and approve it.

The Lease Agreement is between the landlord and tenant and must contain:

the names of authorized occupants in the unit;
the amount of total monthly rent;
the amount of housing assistance payment paid by the Tempe Housing Services;
the amount of rent paid by the assisted family;
the amount of security deposit paid by the family;
the utility services and appliances to be paid or furnished by landlord or tenant;
the responsibilities of the landlord;
the responsibilities of the tenant.

The Housing Choice Voucher Contract is between the landlord and the Tempe Housing Services. It contains:

the name of the family to be assisted;
the address of the approved unit;
the amount of Contract Rent;
the amount of housing assistance to be paid by the Tempe Housing Services;
the landlord's rights and responsibilities;
the Housing Authority's rights and responsibilities.

If the lease and unit are satisfactory, the Housing Services will enter into a Contract with the owner, and the tenant will sign a lease agreement with the owner.

Termination

Even though the term of the assisted tenancy is indefinite, the Lease and Contract can still be terminated by:

The landlord, for cause, in accordance with the Lease (lease violation, violation of law or acts of malfeasance or nonfeasance or other good cause)
Mutual written agreement between the landlord and tenant.
The tenant with not less than 30 days but not more than 60 days written notice.
Landlord Registration

NOTE:  Effective July 1, 2002, State law requires anyone who owns residential rental property in Arizona to register with the County Assessor’s office in the county where the rental property is located. A person who fails to comply shall be assessed a civil penalty of one thousand dollars, plus an additional one hundred dollars fore each month after the date of the original violation until compliance occurs. For more information about this requirement, contact the Maricopa County Assessor’s Office at (602) 506-3406 or at www.maricopa.gov/assessor.