About Rent Increases
After the initial occupancy period, the owner of an Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) property may request a rent adjustment concurrent with the scheduled bi/triennial reexamination effective date. For rent increase requests after initial lease-up, Elm City Communities/Housing Authority of New Haven (ECC/HANH) may request owners to provide information about the rents charged for other units on the premises, if the premises include more than 4 units. In evaluating the proposed rents in comparison to other units on the premises, ECC/HANH will consider unit size and length of tenancy in the other units. The owner will be notified of the determination in writing.
Each unit under HAP contract will be inspected on a two-year or three-year schedule, no later than the effective date of the scheduled biennial or triennial reexamination. Rent increases will not be approved unless any failed items identified by the most recent HQS inspection have been corrected.
All rent adjustments will be effective on the effective date of the scheduled bi/triennial reexamination. This date is provided to the owner in the notice of inspection, along with notification that the requested rent increase must be received at least 60 days prior to the scheduled bi/triennial effective date in order to be considered.
How To Request A Rent Increase
All rent increase requests must be submitted via the HCV Owner Portal. To request a rent increase for your HCV unit, log in to the portal and click on the FINANCE menu.
To submit the rent increase request, complete a Request for Tenancy Approval Renewal Form. Once you have completed this form, press the submit button at the bottom.
Our review of the rent increase request usually takes 3-5 business days (subject to demand).
Unlike the new-move rent determination, ECC does not take the participant’s affordability into account when processing the rent increase. As a result, the participant, not ECC, will most likely be responsible for paying the difference if a rent increase is approved. If the participant does not wish to absorb the increase, he/she may request moving papers from ECC.
Determining a Rent Increase Amount
A rent increase request triggers ECC to perform a new rent determination, including a new rent reasonableness study of the market. This process takes approximately 30 days. If a rent amount change is approved, ECC will issue an Amendment to the HAP Contract to both the participant and property owner, listing the new Contract Rent amount (tenant portion + Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) amount) and the effective date of the change (typically 30 days out). If the request required a change in utility responsibility, ECC will contact the property owner to sign a new HAP Contract and submit a new lease reflecting the change.
Important items to consider:
- Again, requesting a rent increase triggers ECC to perform a new rent determination. If ECC determines that your market value has decreased, the Contract Rent will be automatically lowered accordingly. Therefore, it’s extremely important to do your due diligence and research the market before submitting a rent increase request.
- Even if the property owner and participant mutually agree to change who is responsible for paying any utilities, the property owner must submit a rent increase request and be approved by ECC before the change can go into effect. A new HAP Contract and lease will be required for any change in utility responsibilities.
- Rent increases will not be approved if any failed items identified by the most recent HQS inspection have not been corrected or if the regular inspection is due prior to the effective date of the rent increase and has not yet passed.
- Participants should not pay an increased rent amount or sign a new lease agreement accepting a rent increase or change in utility responsibilities until the rent increase request has been approved by ECC and an Amendment to the HAP Contract notice (or new HAP Contract) has been issued outlining the new tenant portion and HAP amount.
- Please see ECC procedures on approving rent increases.