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Emergency Housing Voucher (EHV) Program

Questions & Answers About the EHV Program

Abbreviation Key
EHV = Emergency Housing Voucher
CH = Columbia Housing
Coc = Continuum of Care
VASH = VA Supportive Housing

1) What is an EHV?

The Emergency Housing Voucher (EHV) Program is a HUD funded initiative available through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) to provide housing for individuals and families who are homeless, at risk of homelessness recently homeless or fleeing, attempting to flee domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, or human trafficking.

2) Who qualifies for an the EHV

Emergency Housing Vouchers (EHVs) are specifically designed for households who are:
• Homeless;
• At Risk of Homelessness;
• Fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking or human trafficking;
• Recently homeless and for whom providing rental assistance will prevent the family's homelessness or having high risk of housing instability.

The applicants must also meet the eligibility criterion for the housing authority's HCV program.

3) How do I apply for an EHV?

We have received the maximum number of applications for the program.  We will post further application openings if additional resources become available.

4) What happens after I apply for the EHV?

Upon receipt, your application will be referred to one of the CoC partners to be evaluated to determine your homelessness eligibility. The partners will contact you to provide documentation and information regarding your housing status. Upon determination of being an eligible homeless applicant, your application will be routed to Columbia Housing's EHV team to assess income eligibility and approval to be placed on the EHV waiting list.

5) How is "at-risk of homelessness" defined and how can communities identify which household are "at-risk of homelessness"?

Please click here to view the eligibility standards for "at-risk of homelessness". 

6) Will Columbia Housing pull applicants from the HCV waiting list for the EHVs?

No, HUD does not allow CH to pull applicants from the HCV waiting for the EHVS. Any applicant on the HCV waiting list who feels that they qualify may apply for an EHV. The CoC referral partners will determine whether or not the household meets the qualification based on the definition of homelessness.

7) Are the vouchers available for individuals or just families?

The EHVs are available for individual and families that meet eligibility criteria.

8) Are former foster youth eligible for the EHVs?

Yes, they are eligible as long as they meet all eligibility requirements and are referred through the Coordinated Entry System.

9) Are unaccompanied youth eligible for EHVs?

Youth between age 18-24 are eligible for EHVs. Youth under 18, must be part of a family that include a person 18 years or older to be eligible for an EHV.

10) Are Veterans eligible for EHVS?

Yes, Veterans are eligible; however, there is the HUD-VASH Voucher that they may pursue through the VA instead of an EHV. The CoC can make referrals to the VA to determine if the veteran will qualify for HUD-VASH Voucher.

11) Will CH assist me with finding a unit?

Yes, the EHVs requires that housing search be a component of assisting households with leasing up.

12) Will I be disqualified from receiving an EHV if I owe a debt to a housing authority?

No, under HUD's provisions, CH will not disqualify an applicant for the basis of owing a public housing authority, evicted from assisted housing in the last 5 years, were former HCV participants who owe the housing authority and/or landlord.

13) How long will CH give me to find a unit?

Each EHV applicant will be allowed 120 days to find a unit. Extensions beyond those terms will be subject to the stipulations in CH's Admin Plan for the regular voucher program.

14) May I lease up my voucher outside of CH's jurisdiction?

Yes, all EHV families may immediately move under portability. 

15) What documents/information will I need to complete the application?

  • Social Security cards for all household members, including children
  • Birth certificates for all household members
  • Government issued photo ID for all household members 18 years and older
  • Proof of eligible immigration status on all non-citizens
  • Verification of income for all household members that receive income

16) Do I have to pay rent?

Yes. Similar to the HCV the tenant is responsible for ensuring that their share of the rent is paid to the owner. The tenants rent will be calculated based off of their income.

17) Will my unit have to pass an inspection?

Yes, the unit will undergo an HQS inspection and must pass in order to be approved for the EHV subsidy.

18) What should I do if I don't have money to pay the security deposit for the unit?

Once you have received the voucher you will be notified of supportive services that the EHV funding has available.

19) Can households without eligible immigrant status be eligible for EHV?

At least one member of the household has to be a U.S. citizen or a noncitizen with eligible immigration status to receive assistance under section 8(o).

20) Can I be over income for the EHV?

Yes, there are income requirements for the EHV as with any federally subsidized housing program. The EHV income qualification will adhere to the policy established for the HCV Program.

Please see the income limits for Richland County below.

Family Size Housing Choice Voucher Program
% Median Income 50%
1 $25,250
2 $28,850
3 $32,450
4 $36,050
5 $38,950
6 $41,850
7 $44,750
8 $47,600








21)Who do I contact if I have questions?

Please call 803-256-9377 or email if you have questions.