Housing Choice Vouchers

Provide decent, safe, and sanitary housing to a tenant at a reasonable rent and receive a property tax abatement in an amount up to 19%.

Get Started

Rent to an HCV family, and enjoy a number of benefits including lower vacancy rates, tenant stability, 
free property inspections, and eligibility for a reduction in property taxes.

Find potential tenants faster by informing HACC of the availability of your property! Ultimately, it is the HCV family’s decision whether or not to rent your property. Of course, as the landlord, you would screen the HCV family just as you would any other prospective tenant. 

Please note: The Cook County Human Rights Ordinance recognizes Housing Choice Voucher participants as a protected class, meaning that it is unlawful to discriminate against tenants or potential tenants on the basis of their status as voucher program participants.

How it Works

The Housing Choice Voucher Program is the federal government’s major program for assisting very low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing in the private market. Since housing assistance is provided on behalf of the family or individual, participants are able to find their own housing, including single-family homes, townhouses and apartments.

  1. Housing Choice Vouchers are administered locally by public housing agencies(PHAs). The PHAs receive federal funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to administer the voucher program.

  2. A family that is issued a voucher is responsible for finding a suitable housing unit of the family’s choice. This unit may include the family’s present residence. Rental units must meet minimum standards of health and safety, as determined by the PHA.

  3. A housing subsidy is paid to the landlord directly by the PHA 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.


In order for a HCV tenant to be approved to move into a unit, the unit must pass a Housing Quality Standards (HQS) Inspection. HCV participants and landlords can call the inspection contractor McCright and Associates at (312)-283-0650 to obtain information about inspections.

To obtain inspection results, visit McCright and Associates results page at or visit the RentCafé under unit inspections. The inspection assigned event ID is required to see results. You can call McCright and Associates to obtain the assigned event ID.

If you have more questions about inspections under HACC, please feel free to contact us.

Biennial Inspections

Each unit under HAP contract must have a biennial inspection no more than 24 months after the most recent inspection. If the inspection is eligible, the responsible party can make the repairs and submit a self-certification form certifying the repairs are complete and a follow up inspection will not be conducted.

If the inspection is eligible, the self‐certification form will be included with the deficiency letter and will also be available on the website.

The self-certification form must be submitted to the inspection contractor McCright and Associates (doing business as Quality Control Inspection Solutions) within twenty-one (21) days of the original failed inspection. If a unit does not qualify for self-certification, McCright and Associates will conduct a follow up inspection either twenty-one (21) days or twenty-four (24) hours after the original failed inspection depending on the type of deficiency.

Special Inspections

The HACC will conduct a special inspection if the owner, family, or another source reports HQS violations in the unit. Before the HACC will schedule a special inspection, the claiming party must submit to the HACC a copy of the written notice submitted to the other party outlining the deficiencies and outlining the reasonable timeframe to make the repairs (usually seven days from notification). Once the timeframe for repairs has expired and the repairs are not complete, the HACC will schedule the special inspection.

During a special inspection, the HACC generally will inspect only those deficiencies that were reported. However, the inspector will record any additional HQS deficiencies that are observed and will require the responsible party to make the necessary repairs.

If the biennial inspection has been scheduled or is due within 90 days of the date the special inspection is scheduled the HACC may elect to conduct a full biennial inspection.

Common HQS Fail Items

  • Damaged door hardware and locks (includes unauthorized double keyed dead bolts)
  • Missing knock out plugs on junction boxes in basements at light fixtures and furnaces
  • Inoperable/defective GFIs (not grounded)
  • Missing and improperly installed pressure relief valves and discharge lines on water heaters
  • Inoperable and improperly installed smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Inoperable stoves (all burners and oven must work)
  • Damaged and missing weather stripping around exterior doors
  • Inoperable windows (do not stay up when raised)
  • Defective interior and exterior paint surfaces
  • Missing and damaged handrails (interior and exterior)
  • Toilets not secured to the floor
  • Insecure and damaged faucets at kitchen and bathroom sinks

Do you want to learn more about HQS inspections? Visit Forms/Documents and view the HQS Checklist, HUD Form 52580.

How to Get Started

The first step in renting to a HCV participant is marketing your property for rent.  Once you have found an HCV family (or they have found you) and you have approved them to rent your unit, the HCV family will have all the moves documentation you will need to begin the process of becoming a HACC HCV Landlord.

Once the move paperwork is complete, it must be submitted to the HACC office at 10 South La Salle Street Suite 2200 Chicago, IL 60603 The move paperwork can be dropped off to the HACC office (no appointment needed) or sent via mail to the HACC office. When the move paperwork is submitted and processed, an HQS inspection is ordered. The final steps of the process include passing the HQS inspection, approving the rent offer and submitting the executed HAP contract and lease to the HACC for payment.

The following summarizes the process to become a landlord with the HACC’s HCV Program:

1.) Market your property, or receive a inquiry from an HCV participant.
2.) Screen and select the HCV participant.
3.) Complete the move packet and submit the completed package to the HACC.
4.) Pass the Housing Quality Standards Inspection.
5.) Approve the Rent Offer.
6.) Once the unit passes inspection and the landlord approves the rent offer, the HACC approved the tenant to rent the unit.
7.) The Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) Contract is sent to the Landlord.
8.) Return the executed lease and HAP Contract to the assigned Housing Specialist.
9.) Monthly Housing Assistance Payments will be sent to Landlord’s bank account via direct deposit.

Landlords are not required to attend a mandatory class, fill out an application or be screened prior to becoming a HACC HCV landlord. The HACC does offer optional landlord training. Visit our homepage for dates, time and locations of upcoming landlord trainings.

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