HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — For the first time in seven years, the Hampton Redevelopment & Housing Authority will accept applications for its Housing Choice Voucher Program.

For three days, starting Thursday, May 11 at 8 a.m. through Saturday, May 13 at 11:59 p.m. residents can sign up Housing Choice Voucher Program waiting list.

“A housing choice voucher allows mobility. Someone will come in, get issued a voucher and then they have the ability to search out for a home with a landlord that will accept that voucher,” said Hampton Redevelopment and Housing Authority Executive Director Aaru Ma’at.

This comes as a housing crisis and inflation grips the nation.

“With rising costs I think any assistance is needed nowadays, especially with rent,” Ma’at said. “A lot of times people are paying a majority of their income toward rent. So, any assistance goes a long way. If they can get assistance, then they can put that money into other areas.”

The last time the application was available was back in July 2016, at the time the housing authority received over 10,000 applicants. 

“We’ve worked through that, so now it’s time to reopen it again,” Ma’at said.

Currently, the housing authority assists over 3,000 families with the voucher program.

Interim Chief Housing Officer Matt Gronaw tells 10 On Your Side the voucher will usually pay about 70% of a person’s rent, depending on income. All of the applicants will be entered into a random lottery. Then 5,000 names will be drawn and added to the waiting list. 

“It’s not a guarantee for assistance, everybody can apply there and then based on the amount of people we think we can assist in 2-4 years, we’re choosing 5,000 names from that randomly,” Gronaw said.

Since the application is only available online but there is some assistance available for those who need help.

“We have partnered with a lot of community agencies in and around Hampton. We have specifically worked with placed that help with veterans, homeless populations, or disabled populations. We have talked to the libraries. They are going to make computers available for citizens to come in and use their machines there. That is how we are trying to help out and make sure that everyone has an opportunity to apply,” Gronaw said.

Applicants can apply at https://hamptonrha.myhousing.com

If you need a reasonable accommodation, and are: 

• A Veteran, please contact Terry Wilson of Veterans Affairs at (757) 722-9961, extension 2133. 

• Homeless, please contact HELP, Inc by emailing daycenter@helphampton.org OR Thomas Sentz of the Hampton Roads Community Action Program by calling (757) 268-1063. 

• Elderly, please contact Vivian Clayton of the Peninsula Agency on Aging by calling (757) 246-1919 or through email at information@paainc.org. 

• Disabled, please contact Catherine Tyler-Northan of the Peninsula Center for Independent Living by calling (757) 827-0275, extension 3 or through email at ctylernorthan@hvacil.org OR Contact your CSB staff person to arrange for assistance if you are working with Hampton Community Services Board 

• Working with the Virginia Department of Human Services, please contact Angel Hill by calling (757) 727-1907 or through email at angelique.hill@dss.virginia.gov 

• A Native-Spanish speaking individual, please contact Patricia Bracknell of the Hispanic Chamber of Coastal Virginia by calling (757) 547-6771. 

If you need access to a computer, the Hampton Library has computers available located at: 4207 Victoria Blvd. Hampton, VA 23669.

You may also contact the automated waiting list hotline at (757) 728-3003.