HUD Announces New Approach to Expand Options for Voucher Holders

HUD recently finalized a new method to establish the Fair Market Rents (FMRs) upon which rental subsidies are based in a manner that would expand neighborhood options for households living in particularly challenging housing markets. This was done to address the limited choices for suitable affordable rental housing for families who depend upon the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program in some metropolitan areas of the country. Often, their housing choices are constrained and higher opportunity neighborhoods remain out of reach because of the current method of calculating their rental assistance.

HUD is changing the geography it uses to calculate FMRs in certain areas from a metropolitan area-wide approach to the Zip code level as a means to expand the options these families have to live in lower poverty neighborhoods. This “Small Area Fair Market Rent” approach is required in 24 metropolitan areas. Under HUD's rule, PHAs operating in other metropolitan areas can opt to apply this new Zip code-based approach.

The following Metropolitan Areas are where HUD believes the SAFMRs will be most effective. As a result, these areas will be required to implement this new Zip code-based approach to calculating the rental assistance of voucher holders starting in FY 2018:

  • Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Bergen-Passaic, NJ HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Colorado Springs, CO HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX Metro Division
  • Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, FL Metro Division
  • Fort Worth-Arlington, TX HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Gary, IN HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Jackson, MS HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Jacksonville, FL HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Monmouth-Ocean, NJ HUD Metro FMR Area
  • North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota, FL MSA
  • Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL MSA
  • Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD MSA
  • Pittsburgh, PA HUD Metro FMR Area
  • Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville, CA HUD Metro FMR Area
  • San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX HUD Metro FMR Area
  • San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, CA MSA
  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL MSA
  • Urban Honolulu, HI MSA
  • Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD HUD Metro FMR Area
  • West Palm Beach-Boca Raton-Delray Beach, FL Metro Division