The Phoenix City Council voted 9-0 Wednesday to increase the incentive amount from $500 to $2,000 for landlords who enter into a Section 8 Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contract.
The Landlord Incentive Program was first authorized by City Council in 2020. It used $500,000 of federal CARES Act funding to incentivize landlords to make more affordable housing units available to Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) holders. The program offered a one-time payment of $500 to property owners for each housing unit they signed into a Section 8 HAP contract. The initial half-million dollars was exhausted in October 2021, and City Council then approved an additional $1 million from the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to continue the program.
Since then, the city has disbursed a total of $148,500 of the new funds to secure 297 housing units for Section 8 voucher holders. The incentives were paid to 165 landlords, of which 32 were first-time Section 8 landlords. In January 2022, members of the Economic Development and Equity subcommittee discussed the idea of raising the incentive amount in order to quickly attract more landlords to the program.
“Increasing the incentive amount means paying out more funds per unit and expending funds more quickly. It will also make landlords who are uncertain of joining the program more receptive to renting to voucher holders due to the greater appeal of receiving a larger lump-sum,” said Housing Director Titus Mathew.
With the incentive raised to $2,000 per new contract, the Housing Department estimates it will take about six months to use up the remaining funds.
Landlords who are interested in learning more about Section 8 Housing can find more information here.