Learning Objectives This course reviews: Site-based waiting list benefits Typical site-based waiting list models Special requirements for site-based waiting lists Considerations for setting up a site-based waiting list system
Background Until the Reform Act, site-based waiting lists (SBWL) were only approved by HUD for PHAs with at least 1250 public housing units, where 90% of the waiting list and 90% of the public housing families were the same race and ethnicity Site-based waiting lists were authorized under the Reform Act of 1998 Regulations at 24 CFR 903.7(b)(2)
Background Under the new asset management model, some PHAs are now considering moving to SBWL Since each AMP is treated as its own business, SBWL are seen as part of managing the business of the AMP
The New Model SBWLs promote greater authority and accountability to the property manager Turnaround time Marketing Screening for suitability Unit offers
SBWL – Filling Units Vacant unit turnaround time Down time – days to notify maintenance that the unit is vacant Make-ready time – days for maintenance to get the unit move-in ready Lease-up time – days for applicant family to be offered and accept the unit and execute the lease
SBWL – Filling Units Turnaround time – make-ready If make-ready days are more than 3-5, the PHA and property manager need to look at: How the maintenance staff is scheduled or How quickly and how well contractors do their jobs Condition of units…
SBWL – Filling Units Turnaround time – make-ready If make-ready days are more than 3-5: How long units are vacant – a vacant unit invites vandalism If the AMP has a lot of vacant units that no one wants, it may be time for some strategic decisions
SBWL – Filling Units Turnaround time – lease-up time If your units are move-in ready and your lease-up days are an average of 3-5, you might want to keep doing what you’re doing But if your days to lease up are beyond that, you may need to consider new strategies Site-based waiting list is one strategy
SBWL – Filling Units Turnaround time – lease-up time Site-based waiting lists would put more responsibility on the property manager to make unit offers, show units, and lease up But site-based waiting lists won’t automatically solve problems – a plan and monitoring it are important
SBWL – Filling Units Turnaround time – lease-up time Are you pulling enough families off the waiting list to result in lease-up of all available units? Are units being offered one at a time, or in batches – and are you tracking who has top priority for getting the unit?
SBWL – Filling Units Turnaround time – lease-up time Are you pulling enough families off the waiting list to result in lease-up of all available units?
SBWL – Filling Units For example: You expect 20 vacancies this summer, so you pull 75 names off the waiting list 20 don’t respond 25 don’t pass eligibility & suitability 20 don’t accept offer(s) Uh oh! You’ve only filled 10 units!
SBWL – Filling Units Managing the waiting list means: Outreach to get additional applicants Deciding on if and when to close the waiting list, and the process to do so And re-opening in time to fill all vacancies Updating the waiting list – HUD suggests every year or every other year
Things to Consider PHAs should be mindful of the need for: Training for affected staff in related fair housing requirements and other requirements Development of appropriate monitoring systems to ensure compliance with requirements
Things to Consider The PHA should provide application materials for sight-impaired and hearing-impaired persons upon request
Models There are many different site-based waiting list models, including: Central waiting list and central leasing The waiting list is administered centrally Applicants are screened centrally Unit offers to applicants are community-wide The central office handles leasing activities
Models Another model is: Central intake but site-based leasing The application process is handled centrally Applicants get their choice of project(s) Project staff completes leasing activities
Models Yet another model: Site-based intake and site-based leasing Assigns complete responsibility and accountability to the property manager, who manages and monitors the waiting list From accepting and processing applications through leasing
Models Hybrid models Some activities could be handled either centrally or by project staff A PHA could have a site-based waiting list for one property, and a centralized waiting list for other properties
Functions – Central or Site-based? Advertising Receiving applications WL administration Determining eligibility Accept or reject • Unit offers • Rent determination • Showing unit • Orientation and lease-up • Move-in inspection
Functions – Central or Site-based? Transfer list Transfers Annual and interim reexaminations Grievances Move-outs
Functions – Central or Site-based? Screening criteria – if done at each site, it will be important that the criteria and the process are uniform Will each property manager check landlord references – current LL and previous LL? Will home visits be done – for everybody, or everybody meeting certain criteria?
Functions – Central or Site-based? Quality control – there needs to be a quality control function to ensure integrity, nondiscrimination, and uniformity
Special Requirements 24 CFR 903.7(b)(2) has specific elements and requirements for implementing site-based waiting lists Some requirements would be eliminated by the proposed “streamlining”, but are required by other statutes or regulations (marked by *)
Special Requirements Regularly submit required occupancy data in an accurate, complete, and timely manner* Such as data from form HUD-50058
Special Requirements Provide full disclosure to each applicant: Of all available projects Location, amenities, occupancy (e.g., family or elderly) Estimates of how long an applicant will likely have to wait to be admitted to various unit sizes and types
Special Requirements Not violate any court order or settlement agreement Not be inconsistent with a pending complaint brought by HUD
Special Requirements Is consistent with affirmatively furthering fair housing Includes marketing activities to attract applicants regardless of race or ethnicity
Special Requirements PHA provides reviews of its site-based waiting lists to determine consistency with civil rights laws and certifications* Although proposed to be eliminated in the streamlined rule, PHAs will still be responsible for monitoring under fair housing, which could include examining disparate impact
Special Requirements PHA reviews to determine consistency with civil rights laws and certifications* Assess changes in racial, ethnic, or disability-related tenant composition at each AMP Use independent testers or other satisfactory means to HUD at least once every three years…
Special Requirements PHA reviews (con’t)* Take any necessary steps to remedy problems Take necessary steps to affirmatively further fair housing
General Waiting List Requirements • Site-based waiting lists and centralized waiting lists must abide by certain fair housing and other regulatory requirements • PHAs are responsible for: • Board-adoption of ACOP and TSAP • Receiving and processing applications fairly and consistently
General Waiting List Requirements • Providing a written application for each applicant • Assuring that each applicant is either admitted, placed on the waiting list, or rejected • Meeting income targeting requirements • Establishing policies to deconcentrate poverty
General Waiting List Requirements • Affirmatively furthering fair housing: • Every PHA (and AMP) office just have posted policy on nondiscrimination based on: • Race • Color • National origin • Sex • Religion • Disability or handicap • Familial status • Age
General Waiting List Requirements • Comply with FHEO requirements: • Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and 1968 • Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 • Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 • Age Discrimination Act of 1975 • Executive Orders 11063, 13166, and 13217 • Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act(VAWA) of 2005
General Waiting List Requirements • Affirmatively furthering fair housing includes: • Providing reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities • National origin protections for LEP • VAWA protections
Setting Up a SBWL Policy and administrative considerations: Roles and responsibilities Which waiting list functions will be centralized or decentralized? Application, administration, marketing, eligibility and screening, leasing, opening or closing of the lists?
Setting Up a SBWL Marketing considerations: Every site has unique characteristics Who will prepare the marketing plan? Who will produce flyers and ads? Must be in accordance with affirmative fair housing marketing plan
Setting Up a SBWL Handling existing applications: How will the PHA handle current applicants on the centralized list?
Setting Up a SBWL Establishing rejection procedures Policy and procedures for when an applicant rejects an offer to a site How many offers will applicants receive? If applicant accepts offer and leases up, must be removed from the other sites’ waiting lists
Setting Up a SBWL Establishing rejection procedures If waiting list is handled at each site, there must be a system for carefully documenting unit offer(s) and rejection(s)
Setting Up a SBWL Establishing rejection procedures Unit offer(s) and rejection(s) need to be thoroughly documented by the PHA Otherwise, it may be that one family receives less offers than stated in ACOP and another family receives too many What is the system and who does the QC?
Setting Up a SBWL Opening and closing waiting lists Will some sites have continually open waiting lists, while others have closed lists? ACOP must state criteria for opening and closing, as well as criteria for removal (e.g., not responding to letter)
Setting Up a SBWL Transfers PHA has discretion to consider transfer requests from tenants The only transfer request the PHA is required to consider are those for reasonable accommodation =
Setting Up a SBWL PHA should carefully define transfer criteria: Criteria for approval How many offers of a transfer unit will be given PHA should establish a priority system (emergencies, PHA-mandated transfer, resident-requested transfer, etc)
Setting Up a SBWL PHA should establish priority order for resident-requested transfers For example: To alleviate verified medical problems of a life-threatening nature Reasonable accommodation transfers…
Setting Up a SBWL PHA should establish priority order for resident-requested transfers For example: Larger bedroom size request (family not overcrowded) Working more than 25 miles from home
Setting Up a SBWL Transfers vs. applicants: PHA should consider what priority, if any, transfers have over waiting list families, for example: Transfer families have priority, or For every 2 transfers, the PHA will admit one applicant family, or Any other reasonable policy
Setting Up a SBWL PHA could establish criteria for approval of resident-requested transfers, such as: Family doesn’t owe back rent or unpaid maintenance Family isn’t under lease violation action