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Participants FAQs

  • Participants FAQs

1. Who is my housing specialist?
You may determine who your Housing Specialist is by going to and finding your specialist under the Section 8 staff directory.

2. I reported a change in my income, has the change been processed?
Changes in household income must be reported and verified. To determine when the reported change in household income is effective contact the Housing Specialist assigned to your case. Income changes do not go into effect retroactively, they go into effect after they are reported. For a staff directory go to 

3. I need to report a change in circumstances (increase or decrease in household income, or change in household composition), how do I report the change?
To report a change in household income or change in household composition contact the housing specialist assigned to your account.

4. I have a Detroit Housing Choice Voucher. How do I transfer my housing assistance to another jurisdiction? How do I start the portability process?
You are eligible to transfer your voucher to any housing authority that operates the Housing Choice Voucher Program. You will need to inform your housing specialist that you want to transfer to another jurisdiction to start the portability process. You need to be in good standing with your current landlord. Your housing specialist will issue Intent to Vacate for you and your landlord to complete. Once the form is completed, turn the form in and, provided that you are in good standing, DHC will issue your voucher and portability paperwork to transfer to the new jurisdiction. Upon receipt of your paperwork the receiving housing authority will contact you to schedule necessary appointments to begin assistance in the new location.

5. I have a Housing Choice voucher from another jurisdiction. How do I transfer my housing to Detroit?
You will need to contact your current housing authority office to start the portability process. They will advise you on their portability procedures and assist you with moving to Detroit.

6. Will your housing agency bill my housing agency of absorbs?
Normal procedures for the Detroit Housing Commission are to bill the initial housing authority for portability.

7. What is my utility reimbursement amount?
If you qualify for utility reimbursement, you will receive a letter from the DHC that indicates the utility reimbursement amount. The utility reimbursement amount is based on your adjusted income, the type of utility (gas, electric, etc), and the type of unit (apartment, single-family home, etc.).

8. When is my annual re-certification interview appointment?
All program participants are scheduled for re-examination appointments approximately four months prior to their anniversary date.

9. Isn’t it enough to report my income just once per year?
Definitely not. Whenever there is any kind of change in income it must be reported in person immediately, not over the phone or by mail.


10. If my income exceeds the limit am I removed from Section 8?
Not necessarily. If at any time it is discovered that you are over income, your Section 8 voucher will be held for you to use again within a six-month period if your income once again falls below the income limit. It is up to you to report if this occurs. In the meantime, you will be responsible to pay the rent in full directly to the landlord.


11. What is Portability?

"Portability" in the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program refers to the process through which your family can transfer or "port" your rental subsidy when you move to a location outside the jurisdiction of the public housing agency (PHA) that first gave you the voucher when you were selected for the program (the initial PHA). The agency that will administer your assistance in the area to which you are renewing is called the "receiving PHA".


12. How do I know if I am eligible for Portability?

Porting Outside of DHC’s Jurisdiction (Port Out): To port out from DHC, the participant should contact their Rental Assistance Specialist for eligibility and instructions. You may print out the Intent To Vacate (ITV) Port form from our website:  Click on the Residents tab, and scroll down to Packets and Forms, you will need the Port-Out ITV.  If you are responsible for the water bill, you must submit a current water bill to your Rental Assistance Specialist.  The water bill must be current, in a repayment agreement or a zero balance. 


13. How to Port to DHC?

The household will need to communicate with their current Public Housing Agency (PHA) where they have their voucher. Any instructions and questions about Portability or how to port to the DHC should first be made with the household's current PHA. 

Once DHC receives the Portability Voucher/Packet from the current Housing Agency, an appointment will be emailed to household for a Portability Briefing Appointment with DHC. The portability briefing will be conducted by phone conference and/or email. The purpose of this appointment is for the household to learn about the Detroit Housing Commission’s (DHC) Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program and your household’s responsibilities and obligations under the Program. All adult household members are required to sign any HUD and DHC required paperwork.

The household should request the current PHA to forward current contact information including the household’s email address, mailing address and phone number with the portability packet to avoid delay in receiving an appointment notice. DHC will also need to know what Michigan County  the household is interested in porting to. DHC’s primary source of communication is email, therefore an email address is required.

Your current housing authority shall send the portability packet to or fax (313) 392-9254  to the attention of DHC Portability.

For questions regarding portability to DHC, you may email:

DHC is currently ABSORBING.