The PHA administers about 5,163 Section 8 Vouchers. The Rent Assistance Program provides rent subsidies for low-income individuals and families in privately owned, existing market rate housing units. The PHA pays the rent subsidy directly to the owner of the rental property with funds provided by HUD.

Program Start


Program Size

About 4,550 vouchers are used to house qualified applicants in one through five-bedroom units.

Eligibility Factors

The program is open to very low income individuals and families who are at or below the following income guidelines. The guidelines are set by Congress and HUD and are based on the metro area median family income adjusted for family size.

Family Size

Very Low Income 
50% MFI

Extremely Low Income 
30% MFI

1 person



2 persons



3 persons



4 persons



5 persons



6 persons



7 persons



8 or more persons



(eff. 5/15/2023, subject to change by HUD)

HUD link to the income limits click here.

A participant in the Voucher Program pays between 30% and 40% of their annual income for rent and utilities. The Voucher Program uses a Payment Standard (approximately equal to the Fair Market Rents published by HUD) that reflects the cost of housing and utilities for the city of St. Paul, and is used to determine the maximum subsidy that the family can receive. Generally, the subsidy paid to the owner by the PHA is the Payment Standard minus 30% of the family's monthly income. Any type of private rental housing is eligible and the unit must meet the federal Housing Quality Standards (HQS) to qualify.

Application Process

The individual or family applies to the PHA for Section 8 rent assistance at a designated time when applications are being accepted to a waiting list. The Section 8 waiting list is currently closed. In addition to meeting income eligibility criteria, applicants are prioritized on the waiting list according to their eligibility for local preferences that include applicants who are extremely low income, Saint Paul residents, veterans, and those associated with special allocations.

The map below shows the jurisdiction of the St. Paul PHA.