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Housing and Homelessness

After 223,000 Applications, 30,000 Lottery Winners Join LA’s Section 8 Waitlist

A man in a suit and tie speaks from behind a podium. Four other men stand close, looking toward him.
Securing a Section 8 voucher is tough, but finding landlords willing to accept them has also been a longtime challenge.
(melissssaf
/
Flickr)
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Topline:

After staging a lottery for the first time in five years, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) has selected 30,000 applicants for its Section 8 waitlist.

What is Section 8? Section 8 is the country’s largest rental assistance program, providing federal subsidies that enable low-income tenants to pay no more than a third of their income on rent. But the number of vouchers pales in comparison to the overwhelming demand for affordable housing in cities like Los Angeles, where sharply rising rents have long outpaced sluggish wage growth.

How many people applied for the lottery? HACLA received 223,375 lottery applications. This represents an 18.94% increase since the last lottery in 2017. The increase shows that the growing number of Angelenos needing housing assistance outpaces the available federal funds, according to a spokesperson from the agency.

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Who was selected: The 30,000 slots went to people who live or work in the city of Los Angeles, as well as to veterans and households with a member who is a veteran released from military service under conditions other than dishonorable.

What's next: All applicants will receive an email informing them whether or not they got a spot on the waitlist. Starting Thursday, applicants can also check their status at hacla.hcvlist.org or by calling (877) 621-7328 TTY 711.

Go deeper: LA Loses Much More Affordable Housing Than It Gains

Still have questions? Check out our Q&A post on Section 8. If you have additional questions, let us know here:

What questions do you have about housing in Southern California?

KPCC/LAist housing reporter David Wagner contributed to this report.