Information for Landlords

Landlord Interest Information

Thank you for your interest in increasing access to affordable housing for members of our community. Without people like you, many families in Great Falls could face ongoing housing instability and even homelessness. If you are a rental property owner or manager, the information below provides a step-by-step guide to how the Housing Choice Voucher program works. We look forward to a long and prosperous relationship with you! For additional information contact our office at 406-453-4311 x307, Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 4:30pm.

GFHA’s Landlord Guide

GFHA’s Landlord Guide includes several documents necessary to begin your journey as an HCV Landlord. Individual sections are available below:

How the HCV Program Works

A Basic Guideline

  • A family is determined to be eligible.
  • The family is issued a Housing Choice Voucher.
  • The family searches for a unit to rent.
  • When the family finds a unit, they ask the owner or landlord if they will accept the family as a tenant, and if they are willing to accept a Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) from the Great Falls Housing Authority.
  • The owner and family sign a Request for Tenancy Approval (RTA) and submit it with a blank copy of the lease to HCV staff. Note: RTA does not hold the tenant to the unit or obligate you rent to the tenant at the time of filling out the RTA.
  • If the owner’s lease and rent amount are acceptable, the HCV staff will conduct an inspection. Inspections are scheduled after the Request for Tenancy Approval is received.
  • If there are repairs to be made, the repairs must be completed before assistance may begin.
  • Once repairs are completed, the owner and tenant sign a lease.
  • The family pays the security deposit.
  • The owner signs a Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contract with Great Falls Housing Authority.
  • The family moves into the unit.
  • Each month a portion of the rent is paid directly to the owner by the Great Falls Housing Authority, and the family pays their portion directly to the owner.
  • The family reports changes in income and family composition to the Great Falls Housing Authority.
  • The family’s eligibility is recertified each year.
  • The unit must be inspected on an annual or biennial basis and pass the HQS inspection.
  • Relocations are possible (after the initial 12-month period).

Landlord Benefits for HCV Participation

  • Housing Assistance Payments are directly deposited to the owner or agent’s bank account within the first five (5) business days of the month.
  • Risks in rent default are reduced because the tenant’s portion of rent is based on their income.
  • The owner sets the amount of the security deposit according to local practice.
  • Great Falls Housing Authority maintains a landlord list that is provided to all tenants searching for a place to live, which may assist with property vacancy rates.
  • The owner is responsible for screening tenants, which allows the owner full discretion for tenant selection.
  • Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspections assist the owner with identifying areas that need repair and maintain the overall quality of the unit.
  • The initial lease term is 12 months, which improves tenant stability. HCV guidelines prohibit families from relocating with continued assistance during the initial term or first 12 months of their lease, unless the owner agrees to a mutual rescission of the lease.
  • Great Falls Housing Authority encourages timely payment of tenant rent by enforcing the family obligations in the program. It is a violation of a family’s responsibilities in the program if they fail to make timely rent payments or damage the unit beyond normal wear and tear.