Section 8 Program

The section 8 voucher program helps qualified low income renters to pay rent. You must meet certain income guidelines based on the number of members in the family. The Section 8 program pays a portion of the rent with the remaining part paid by the renter. The amount of rental assistance received (subsidy) is based on the renter’s gross monthly income. The Section 8 program for San Benito County is operated by the Santa Cruz Housing Authority.

CSDC has thirteen units eligible for section 8 vouchers at the Del Rio Court Apartments and at Toro Plaza. CSDC normally charges the current Fair Market Rent for our section 8 units less the applicable utility allowance. CSDC contacts Santa Cruz Housing Authority when one of our section 8 units becomes available to rent. The Housing Authority refers prospective renters to us, who hold an eligible voucher.

You must apply for a section 8 voucher through the Santa Cruz Housing Authority. Normally, the Housing Authority has a waiting list of persons eligible to receive the vouchers. Visit the Santa Cruz Housing Authority Web Site for more information on the section 8 voucher program or for information to apply for the section 8 voucher program.

If you are interested in renting a section 8 unit or another nonsubsidized rental property from CSDC, you can place your name on our waiting list by filling out an on-line request form or by contacting our property manager by email or by telephone.

Information for Renters

The program's primary purpose is to provide rental assistance to low-income families for affordable, decent, safe, and sanitary housing. Recipients of this assistance receive a voucher and use it to rent homes in the private market. Eligibility for the voucher is based on a family's household income. Local Housing Agencies (“LHAs”) may also establish local preferences or priorities for families receiving vouchers. For example, an LHA may give preference to a family with at least one adult who is working full-time. Seventy-five percent of new vouchers issued must be made available to families earning less than 30 percent of the area median income (AMI). The voucher covers a portion of the rent and the tenant is expected to pay the balance. The tenant's share of rent is an affordable percentage of their income, which is generally between 30 to 40 percent of their monthly gross income for rent and utilities.

Once a recipient is approved for voucher, the recipient searches for an apartment in the private market. When the recipient finds an apartment from a landlord willing to accept the voucher, the LHA will then inspect the rental unit to ensure that it meets the housing quality standards (HQS) of the program. If it does meet HQS and the rent is deemed appropriate for comparable rents for that size unit, the family and the landlord sign a lease. At the same time, the landlord and the LHA sign a housing assistance payments (HAP) contract that lasts the length of the lease. The subsidy is paid to the landlord directly by the LHA on behalf of the participating family. The family then pays the difference between the actual rent charged by the landlord and the amount subsidized by the program.

The Santa Cruz Housing Authority web site provides more information for renters. You can access this information by clicking on this link:


Housing Authority of the County of Santa Cruz
2160 41st Avenue
Capitol Ca 95010-2060
(831) 464-0170
(831) 637-0487

Information for Landlords
The Santa Cruz Housing Authority web site contains information for landlords regarding use of this program, fair market rents, utility allowances, payment standards, how to select renters, forms to use with tenants, and other useful information. You can access this information by clicking the following link:
Current Section 8 Housing Availability
For current availability of Section 8 apartments and single family dwellings (“SFD”) you can call Santa Cruz Housing Authority’s rent hotline at (831) 464 - 0170 extension 321 or go directly to their website by clicking on the following link: