Monday, March 24, 2014

Section 8 Coming To REI of Virginia This Week

Tuesday evening at REI of Virginia we have Helen Shampine and David Bustamante coming to speak with us. They are in charge of the Section 8 program in this area. The Section 8 program used to consist of both the Housing Authority and TAP but it has all been turned over to the Authority now.

The purpose will be to talk about the Section 8 program to the members of our group that don’t know about it and to answer any questions or suggestions that we may have.

Over the years I have been real happy with the Section 8 program. Can’t beat that guaranteed rent. And the residents are under your thumb to a certain degree because if they are in violation of the lease they can lose their Section 8.

However there have been some problems lately. For example, now it takes much longer to get a new Section 8 tenant into a unit than it used to. You can wait for a month or more for everything to be approved. With that considered and the option to rent the property to someone else not on the program who qualifies and has rent in hand, it makes it hard to willingly lose a month or more of rent in order to rent to the Section 8 tenant. At that point the benefits get outweighed to a degree.

They have also been having some problems with inspectors that are way over the top nit picking every little thing. I’ve had small scrapes on a deck from the tenant dragging furniture across it that I had to have repainted because the inspector thought it fell into the chipped flaking paint category. And she just checked the property 2 weeks earlier with the last section 8 tenant. I’ve had an inspector on a re-inspection tell me that I had to cut out all of the caulking around the bathtub and replace it because the TENANT was a filthy pig and didn’t use Tilex to get rid of the mold that gets on all grout or caulk if it is never cleaned. I see that as a tenant issue, not a landlord issue.

So come on out to the meeting with your suggestions in hand. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the program I would still suggest it even though I have had problems. The main reason I would is that I haven’t given up faith in the people who run this program as they have always been concerned with my issues and I feel like they are trying to work to always keep it a top notch program in our city. I can understand that they will have some bumps along the way and have confidence that they will fix them.

See you at the meeting!


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