How much does section 8 pay? Find out here!

The amount of Section 8 rent assistance depends on HUD’s payment standards and the housing unit’s location. Typically, households receive a subsidy equivalent to the payment standard minus 30% of their adjusted gross income. If rent and utilities exceed the voucher payment standards, tenants can cover the excess, provided it doesn’t surpass 40% of their monthly adjusted income when starting a new lease. To find out how much Section 8 pay for rent in your area, you can contact your local PHA. They will be able to provide you with the FMR for your area and the payment standard that they have set.

Example of How much does section 8 pay in USA Statewise?

Please note that these are just examples, and the actual amount that Section 8 pays for rent will vary depending on the factors listed above, including your household income and the payment standard set by your local PHA

StateTwo-bedroom ApartmentThree-bedroom Apartment
New Hampshire$1,600$2,000
New Jersey$2,400$2,900
New Mexico$1,300$1,500
New York$3,500$4,200
North Carolina$1,400$1,700
North Dakota$1,200$1,400
Rhode Island$2,000$2,500
South Carolina$1,200$1,400
South Dakota$1,100$1,300
West Virginia$1,100$1,300

Section 8 Payment Calculator

Section 8 Payment Calculator

How to use the Section 8 Payment calculator


Sarah is a single mother with two children living in a metropolitan area. She’s currently applying for the Section 8 housing assistance program to help with her monthly rent. She has the following information:

  • Monthly adjusted income: $2,500
  • Housing Authority Payment Standard (HAPS) for her area: $1,800

Sarah wants to calculate how much Section 8 will pay towards her rent.


  1. She enters her monthly adjusted income: $2,500 into the “Monthly Adjusted Income” input field.
  2. She enters the HAPS for her area, which is $1,800, into the “Housing Authority Payment Standard (HAPS)” input field.
  3. Sarah clicks the “Calculate” button.
  4. The calculator processes the information and displays the result.

Section 8 Payment: $1,050

This means that the Section 8 program will pay $1,050 of Sarah’s monthly rent, and she will be responsible for paying the remaining amount. Sarah can use this information when searching for a suitable rental property, knowing how much assistance she can receive.

Factors that determine how much Section 8 pays

Payment Standards Set by HUD:

  • The rent subsidy amount is determined by payment standards set by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
  • Payment standards are based on the fair market rents (FMRs) for the area where the housing unit is located, calculated annually by HUD to reflect regional average rent.

Location of the Housing Unit:

  • The maximum rent Section 8 will pay varies by region within a state.
  • Housing authorities set payment standards for their service areas, which may differ from HUD’s FMRs. Thus, payment standards can vary between housing authorities.

Payment Standards Set by Local Housing Authority:

  • Payment standards for Section 8 housing can differ from one housing authority to another, contributing to regional variation in the maximum rent assistance.

Tenant’s Adjusted Gross Income:

  • Generally, the tenant’s portion of the rent is 30% of their adjusted gross income.
  • If the tenant’s rent and utilities exceed voucher payment standards, they may pay the difference, but it must not exceed 40% of their monthly adjusted income during the start of a new tenancy.

Income Limits and Household Size:

  • Income limits for Section 8 housing vary by region and family size.
  • Household size and income are key factors in determining eligibility. Typically, a family’s income must not exceed 50% of the median income for the county or metropolitan area.

Eligibility Status:

  • The Section 8 program is open to U.S. citizens and specific categories of non-citizens with eligible immigration status.
  • Any changes in household size or income must be reported within 10 days, as failure to do so can result in the termination of the voucher.

How does the landlord receive payment from section 8?

Payment Structure:

  • Both the tenant and the housing authority make monthly rent payments to the landlord.
  • The housing authority provides direct deposit payments to the landlord for the difference between the jurisdiction’s payment standard and the tenant’s total payment.
  • The tenant covers the gap between the total rent and the voucher amount, which is paid by the housing authority.

Lease Agreement:

  • All involved parties, including the local Public Housing Authority (PHA), sign the lease.
  • The landlord also signs a Housing Assistance Payments Contract, guaranteeing direct receipt of the Section 8 subsidy.

Rent Calculation:

  • Section 8 payments cover some or all of the voucher holder’s rent.
  • On average, each household contributes between 30% and 40% of its income toward rent.

Qualification and Government Payment:

  • Qualifying tenants pay 30% of their income for rent, while the federal government covers the remainder.

Calculation of the tenant’s portion of the rent

The calculation of the tenant’s portion of the rent is a crucial factor in determining Section 8 payments. Here are the details:

  • Generally 30% of the Tenant’s Adjusted Gross Income: The tenant’s rent contribution is typically 30% of their adjusted gross income. For instance, if a tenant’s adjusted gross income is $1,000, they would pay $300 towards rent and utilities.
  • Tenant May Pay the Difference if Rent and Utilities Exceed Voucher Payment Standards: If the tenant’s rent and utilities surpass the voucher payment standards, they may cover the difference. For example, if the voucher payment standard is $1,000, and the tenant’s actual rent and utilities amount to $1,200, the tenant would pay the $200 difference.
  • Total Amount Paid for Rent and Utilities Should Not Exceed 40% of Monthly Adjusted Income When Initiating a New Tenancy: To initiate a new tenancy, the total rent and utilities paid by the tenant should not exceed 40% of their monthly adjusted income. For instance, if the tenant’s monthly adjusted income is $2,000, the combined amount paid for rent and utilities should not exceed $800.


In conclusion, the amount of Section 8 assistance varies depending on factors like location, income, and HUD‘s payment standards. Tenants typically pay 30% of their adjusted gross income towards rent, with potential adjustments if their rent exceeds voucher standards. The program’s flexibility allows for support tailored to individual needs, ensuring housing affordability. To determine specific payment amounts, contacting the local Public Housing Authority is crucial. Section 8 plays a vital role in providing accessible housing and reducing the financial burden on low-income households, promoting stable and secure living environments.

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