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Portability

Portability lets voucher holders move into a different housing authority's jurisdiction. When you port your voucher, you have to follow the new housing authority's rules and policies. These may be different than your previous housing authority's rules and policies.

How do I move out of KCHA's jurisdiction?

Our Moving to a Different Home page outlines how to use your voucher outside of KCHA's jurisdiction.

How do I move into KCHA's jurisdiction?

If you want to move into KCHA's jurisdiction, start by informing your current housing authority of your intent to port. They will have steps to follow to start that process. Once they've completed that process, they will send the port request to KCHA.

After we receive the request, KCHA will:

  1. Accept the request from the housing authority.
  2. Send our paperwork to you via email, fax, or mail.
  3. Process your file after you send the paperwork back. This can take up to 10 business days.
  4. Reach out to you if additional information is needed.
  5. Schedule your voucher to be issued.

Is KCHA accepting port files?

We accept all incoming port requests.

Is KCHA "Billing" or "Absorbing"?

We are billing only.

Where do I send port requests?

How long does the port process take?

HUD guidelines state the process can take 30-45 days. We strive to issue vouchers as quickly as possible. The speed of the process will depend upon:

  • How complete the information for the file is from your housing authority.
  • How quickly you respond with the paperwork and additional items.
  • The number of households we are assisting at the time your file is received.

How many bedrooms will my voucher be?

Each housing authority has policies on how they calculate the number of bedrooms for each household. At KCHA, our policy is:

  1. One bedroom for head of household and spouse (or significant other).
  2. One bedroom for every two children, regardless of age or sex.
  3. Different generations don't share a bedroom. For example, a grandparent won't share a bedroom with their children or grandchildren.
  4. No more than two people per bedroom. If you want, your family size can exceed this limit by one person (for example, a family of five can rent a two-bedroom unit).

A household may rent a larger unit as long as the rent of the larger unit is within the rent estimate limits of the voucher.

How much will my voucher be worth?

This depends on the size of your unit and where it is located. KCHA bases its payment standards on ZIP code to better match the rental markets in different parts of the county. Under this system our payment standards are higher in areas where rents are higher.

Use our subsidy calculator to compare prices.

How much time will I have on my voucher?

The voucher dates will be determined by your home housing authority. We will add an additional 30 days to the expiration date on your current voucher.

For example, if the voucher is issued Oct. 1, 2020 with an expiration of Dec. 31, 2020 – KCHA will add 30 days to the expiration date, making the new expiration Jan. 30 2021.

How do I request an extension?

Your home housing authority is the "owner" of your voucher until you live in a unit in KCHA's jurisdiction. You will have to ask your home housing authority to request an extension. If the extension is approved, they will notify us of the new extended expiration dates and KCHA will update your voucher.

I found a great new place but I don’t have my voucher from KCHA yet. Can I put down a deposit?

We do not recommend placing deposits before the voucher is calculated. If you choose to put down a deposit, you will be doing this at your own risk.

How do I cancel my port request to King County?

Please send your request in writing to portability@kcha.org. If you are requesting to have your file sent to a different housing authority, please include this information with your request to cancel. We will notify your home housing authority. It will be your home housing authority who sends your file to the next housing authority unless they direct us otherwise.

Do I need to provide my bank statements?

Yes, if:

  1. You have $50,000 or more in assets
  2. You are self-employed

Can I add or remove family members to my household while porting?

You may add or remove family members while porting in as long as:

  • The initial housing authority approves of the change, and
  • Any adults being added to the household pass a background check and they do not owe money to another housing authority.

What is KCHA's Reasonable Accommodation process?

If you have an approved reasonable accommodation with your current housing authority, please give us a copy of the approval letter. We are happy to honor approved reasonable accommodations from another housing authority.

KCHA provides accommodations to qualified persons with disabilities. These changes allow your living arrangements to compare to those of other renters. Your request cannot cause an extreme financial burden. It also cannot change the fundamental features of a housing program.

As it relates to your voucher, accommodations can include:

  • An additional bedroom for a live-in aide or another medically necessary reason.
  • A higher payment standard to access a medically necessary unit.

Learn more about KCHA and Reasonable Accommodations.

I was approved for a live-in aide. Do I need to have the live-in aide added to my voucher before I choose a new home?

We must have the live-in aide added to your voucher before your landlord/RFTA packet is received. KCHA does not have a requirement of licensing for a live-in aide, but we must run a criminal background check in order to add the person to the household.

What if I have more questions?

Contact us at (206) 214-1300 or Portability@kcha.org.

Main Office
600 Andover Park W.
Tukwila, WA 98188
Tel: (206) 574‑1100
Fax: (206) 574‑1104
TDD: (800) 833‑6388
Directions

Section 8 Office
700 Andover Park W.
Tukwila, WA 98188
Tel: (206) 214‑1300
Fax: (206) 243‑5927
Directions