We will continue to update this page with common questions.
Applying to the Waitlist
I want to apply to the waitlist. What should I do?
Our waitlist is currently closed. You can check our waitlist page for the latest information.
Do not use any other website to apply. It is free to apply for our waitlist when it is open. Some fake web sites charge money for what they say is a way to apply. They are fake web sites put up by dishonest people to cheat you.
When will we accept applications again?
We will likely accept applications in about two years. We will wait until the waitlist gets shorter before adding more people to it. Sign up to get an email when the waitlist reopens.
How the Waitlist Works
If I get on the waitlist, where on the waitlist will I end up? How long will I have to wait to get to the top of the waitlist?
Once we randomly select the names for the waitlist we will then randomly number them. A person ending up at the bottom of that list will probably wait two years or more before they get to the top of the list.
What happens when my name comes to the top of the waitlist?
THA will contact you to complete the process. This will involve eligibility verification to ensure you still qualify for assistance.
It is very important that you notify THA about any changes to your contact information. If we are unable to reach you, your name will be removed from the list.
If I get on the waitlist and then get to the top of it, am I guaranteed to get housing assistance?
No. When you get to the top of the list, we check to make sure you are eligible under our program rules. Learn more about those rules on our eligibility page.
I’m already on the waitlist. Do I need to apply again?
If you are already on the waitlist, then you do not need to reapply. To make sure you are on the list, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are on the waitlist and need to update your contact info, add or remove a family member, reapply for reinstatement or remove yourself from our waitlist. Please fill out this form.
What do I do if I move while I am on the waitlist?
Submit a waitlist update form with our THA administrative office.
Will I improve my chances of being selected if I apply multiple times?
No, we will only count one of your applications.
If I do not get on the waitlist, what can I do?
We are very sorry that we cannot serve everyone. If you do not get on the waitlist, here are some other steps you can take:
- Apply again the next time we open our waitlist. That will probably be in another two or three years. You can sign up to get notified.
- Apply for Pierce County Housing Authority’s waitlist
- If you are currently experiencing homelessness or are at risk of homelessness in Pierce County, call Coordinated Entry at 253-682-3401.
Our Housing Programs
What type of housing help is this waitlist for?
This waitlist is for two types of housing help:
Will I get to choose between a THA apartment and a HOP Voucher?
Over the next year, most of our housing help will be offers to live at one of our apartments. If you are offered a HOP voucher, you may turn it down and continue waiting for an offer to live at one of our apartments.
If I get offered a THA apartment that I do not want, can I turn it down?
You can only turn down a unit offer if you have a good reason, or “good cause.” If you do not have a good cause you can decline the unit and wait for a HOP Voucher. You will not get another offer for a Tacoma Housing Authority apartment.
What is good cause?
An applicant may only turn down a unit for good cause once. Examples of good cause include cases where accepting our apartment offer would require the adult household member to:
- Break a lease;
- Quit a job;
- Drop out of school, college, an educational institution, or job training program;
- Take a child out of day care; or
- Take a child out of an educational program for children with disabilities.
We require documentation of good cause for unit refusals.
What’s the difference between a Tacoma Housing Authority apartment and a HOP Voucher?
We own apartments throughout Tacoma. Some of these include, but are not limited to, homes at Salishan, Bay Terrace, and Wright Street Apartments. Some of our apartments are for households with or without children, others are for senior/disabled households.
The HOP (Housing Opportunity Program) helps low-income households pay the rent each month to private landlords. It replaced the Section 8 program.
Tacoma Housing Authority (THA) Apartment
- Where you live: If you rent a THA apartment, we will offer you a specific apartment at one of our properties. You do not get to choose where to live. We do this so we can house more families and offer housing assistance within two years.
- Subsidy amount: At THA apartments, your portion of the rent is based on your household income. Typically, a household pays around 30% of their income toward rent.
- Time limit: There is no time limit for the assistance at THA apartments. Under present rules, you can stay in the unit as long as you need it and remain eligible. If you want to move, your housing subsidy does not go with you.
Housing Opportunity Program (HOP) Voucher
- Where you live: With an HOP voucher, you can take a your voucher and rent an apartment on the private market anywhere in Tacoma.
- Subsidy amount: HOP pays a fixed rate towards your rent based on your household size. If your household income goes up, your share of the rent does not change. In this way, you keep all of your increased income. In the same way, if your household’s income goes down, your rent would not go down either. You would have to make up the difference.
- Time limit: HOP vouchers have a 5-year time limit for households that are able to work. If there is a work-able person in your household, you will have a time limit. There is no time limit for elderly or disabled households.
Learn more about our eligibility rules to see whether you are eligible to receive help.
How long will it take to get housing with THA?
That will depend on the program you are on and how quickly current participants leave the program. Our Housing Opportunity Program waitlist opens every 2 years, and those selected in the lottery may wait up to 2 years to receive assistance.
I’m homeless now. What do I do? Where can I go if I need immediate housing?
Our waitlist is not a way to get emergency help. Even if our lottery selects your application for the waitlist, it may take up to two years before you will get housing.
If you are homeless now in Pierce County, call 2-1-1 for referrals to Coordinated Entry and other community resources.
Pierce County Housing Authority also has their housing waitlist open. You may apply on their website.
What is Coordinated Entry?
Coordinated Entry is the best way to find out about most homeless assistance programs and receive assistance in Pierce County.
I’m already on the waitlist but need to update my information, add or remove a household member, or remove my household from the waitlist. Where do I go?
Please fill out this form. You may also fill this form out if you were removed from the waitlist in the last six months and would like to apply for reinstatement.
I have a question that hasn’t been answered. Who can I ask?
Please contact us at (253) 448-2738 or email email@example.com