October is a great month to FALL in love with Housing!
This month’s blog is a shout out to all landlords out there in Southeast Kansas. If you already work with SEK-CAP Housing Programs, thank you so much! Without landlords who are willing to work with low-income tenants, we would not be able to provide rental assistance. You make it possible for families to maintain safe and affordable housing, which also improves overall health, education, and employment opportunities.
If you are a landlord that doesn’t currently work with SEK-CAP, we hope you will consider it. You may already have tenants who need a little help paying their rent each month. It’s a pretty common occurrence in Southeast Kansas. According to the 2019 Out of Reach Report, published by the National Low-Income Housing Coalition, 44.2% of individuals in Kansas are spending 30% or more of their wages on rent. Wowzers! In many cases, families are having to choose: Do I pay my rent or do I buy food and prescriptions? I’m sure you (landlords) are hoping they will choose to pay their rent, but I think we can all agree that food and prescriptions are also pretty important.
SEK-CAP rental assistance can help keep rent at an affordable level for families, giving them more money to go towards those basic needs. If you have tenants who are struggling, they can apply for the Section 8 Program online at http://sekcap.housingmanager.com. If they don’t have access to a computer or smart phone, they can call our office and do the application by phone.
Disclaimer: This is not a quick fix. Your tenants can expect to wait about a year for us to reach their name on the Section 8 waitlist. I wish we could make it happen quicker, but we must wait until tenants leave our program before we can help someone new. We are able to help about 380 tenants at once with current funding levels for Section 8.
Once your tenant receives their voucher, the process looks like this:
- Landlord and tenant fill out Request for Tenancy Approval
- SEK-CAP completes Housing Quality Standards Inspection
- Move-In Paperwork is signed by all parties
- Rental assistance begins and is paid monthly as long as the tenant remains eligible.
If you want more details about the process, please check out our Landlord Information Packet.
If you would like for us to share your contact information with house hunters, you can fill out our New Landlord Participation Form and we will add you to our Landlord List. We provide the Landlord List to anyone who receives a voucher from us, and we post it on our website.
You may be wondering, "What is in it for me?" Well, here are some reasons you might want to work with SEK-CAP rental assistance programs:
- SEK-CAP will send our portion of the rent on the first business day of the month (in accordance with HUD regulations).
- We offer security and utility deposits once in a lifetime for tenants receiving rental assistance from us.
- We inspect the unit at least every two years, which can help the landlord identify maintenance concerns and potential property damages. Special inspections can be done any time at the request of the tenant or landlord.
- We will not allow rental assistance tenants to move during the first year of the lease, unless violations of the HAP contract occur or there is a safety issue.
- SEK-CAP will enforce the rules and regulations of the program.
SEK-CAP rental assistance programs also provide a little boost to the local economy. Both rental assistance programs combined contribute around 1.6 MILLION dollars per year to the Southeast Kansas economy in the form of rent and deposits to landlords and deposits to utility companies. In the last year, we have been able to help 493 households obtain/maintain affordable housing with these funds, 50% of which were elderly and/or disabled.
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out! We look forward to hearing from you.