Voucher Program Participant FAQs

Please click on a question below to view the answer. For answers to more frequently asked questions about the Housing Choice Voucher Program, please link to specific topics from the Housing Choice Voucher FAQs menu.

How is income verified?

All income, benefits, and allowances must be verified with documentation. HADC staff must obtain written verification from independent third party sources and document tenant files. In addition, the Housing Authority reviews employment records with the Georgia Department of Labor. If unreported income is found, this can result in termination of assistance. The family will be required to repay the HADC for any overpaid assistance.

Can I pay the extra rent to make up the amount the owner wants for the unit?

No. The Housing Authority determines the tenant's portion of the rent. The owner may not, under any circumstances, charge or accept additional payments from the family for their share of the rent that has not been approved by the HADC.

When are changes reported?

Any change in income or family composition must be reported to the HADC within 10 business days of its occurrence. Change of Income and Family Composition Forms can be downloaded from our website and are available at the Housing Authority's reception desk. Failure to report or under reporting changes could jeopardize your eligibility for housing program assistance.

Where are vouchers accepted?

You may use your Housing Choice Voucher anywhere within DeKalb County or in the USA where there is a Housing Authority to administer the program. Ask your housing counselor for information regarding portability. Wherever you choose to live, the housing must pass a Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspection. It must also pass a rent reasonableness test to assure that the rent charged is fair.

If a property owner or manager has housing which qualifies and he or she is willing to rent it under the Housing Choice Voucher Program, a rental agreement or lease and Housing Assistance Payment contract must be signed. Available properties are listed on the HADC website and on Georgia Housing Search.

What do I do if I want to move and use my rental assistance in another unit?

The Housing Authority must receive a copy of the Notice to Vacate Form, which is required to be signed by your property owner/manager. We will review the notice to vacate and your file to ensure that you are eligible to receive a voucher. After your file has been reviewed, you will be contacted to come to our office to receive your voucher, Request for Tenancy Approval (RTA) and a Briefing Packet.

Does the Housing Authority assist with security deposit funds?

No. The tenant is responsible for paying all of the security deposit.

How much can an owner collect for a security deposit?

The security deposit amount collected must be in compliance with state and local laws. Owners are prohibited from charging Housing Choice Voucher families more for a security deposit than their unassisted families. The security deposit may not exceed one month’s contract rent.

Where can I get information about the utility reimbursement prepaid debit card?

The HADC implemented a Utility Reimbursement Debit Card in September 2012. Utility reimbursement will be provided via U.S. Bank Card Services. The prepaid card program is mandatory for all participants. Funds will be deposited by the 5th of every month.

The prepaid card can be used at all participating utility companies and convenience stores. Fees associated with the use of the prepaid card may vary with utility companies. ATM transaction fees may apply at non U.S. Bank or non-MoneyPass locations. A PIN number is required for ATM withdrawals and point of sale purchases where “Debit” is selected.

The following purchases are restricted: gambling – including internet and lottery purchases, some hotels and casinos, pay at the pump, purchases of alcohol, and purchases of cigars. One (1) free replacement card will be provided per year. Additional cards are $5.00 each for standard shipping and $15.00 each for expedited shipping. For a complete list of fees, log in to your account at www.usbankreliacard.com or call the Cardholder Services Department at the number listed on the back of your card.

If your card is lost or stolen or if you need to resolve purchase disputes, please contact U.S. Bank's Cardholder Services Department directly at (855) 282-6161.

If funds are not deposited by the 5th of the month, please contact the HADC at 404-270-2500.

For Frequently Asked Questions about the HCV Visa Prepaid Card, LINK HERE.

What is RentCafé?

RentCafé is HADC’s web-based Participant Portal. It allows information to be exchanged and processes to be completed online without paper forms and applications.

RentCafé will save clients time and money because they can submit documents and complete processes online at their convenience. Clients will also have immediate access to important information through their portal.

With RentCafé, you can:

  • View your Housing Specialists’ contact information.

  • Complete Initial Certification online.

  • Complete Annual Recertifications online.

  • Complete Interim Recertifications (changes) online.

  • View your portion of the rent.

  • Access inspection status updates.

For RentCafé Resources, please link to HADC’s Participant Forms & Information webpage to access guides that can assist you.  

A Mobile App for RentCafé is available from Apple’s App Store or Google Play.

For assistance, contact Client Services at 404-270-2500.

How do I complete my intake certification or annual recertification?

HCV Intake Certification and Annual Recertification can be completed online via the HADC’s Participant RentCafé Portal.

Instructions and Step by Step Guide for registering and signing into RentCafé can be accessed here.  

For RentCafé Resources to register, sign-in, or complete an intake certification or annual recertification, please link to HADC’s Participant Forms & Information webpage to access guides that can assist you.