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Old 07-14-2007, 09:44 PM
 
Location: Not tied down... maybe later! *rawr*
2,689 posts, read 6,200,657 times
Reputation: 4321

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Yep... some with mental illness' could be Section 8.... but not a majority and I'm willing to place a pretty heafty bet on that.

Ashame for those that are.

 
Old 07-14-2007, 10:09 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara
627 posts, read 2,784,087 times
Reputation: 411
What sort of things do you look for? Do you know if a realtor is asked this question whether they are obligated (legally) to tell you? How can they find out?

I am very sorry to hear this happened to you. I am very happy you had a decent outcome on selling your home though. That must have been very frustrating. I would have been livid.

There are so many good hard working people that have to leave or buy way outside a community that they work in or have spent so much of their life. It is sad when people on the dole basically get handed housing in these communities and the areas aren't always just lower to middle income.

In Santa Barbara the housing is high everywhere and some of this housing is being subsidized to violators in very expensive areas and the state or county just doesn't follow up on the multiple complaints. After a certain time frame too with this sort of subsidized housing these people can sell their home for whole price and very much make a profit. Whereas a middle class person or family that works, would never have a chance at that home, much less the sell and profit of it.

This is also another reason that makes it is difficult for people to move from exclusive communities in large or mid sized cities to smaller exclusive large towns. Those on the dole can live basically anywhere in these smaller communities, except not the multi, multi million dollars homes, but sometimes purchase of a million + dollar home is allowed (because they sometimes have few that are not that and/or want to spread them out). No one checks up to see if they violate any of the restrictions even with multiple complaints.

I am concerned about the people of Santa Barbara feeling guilty about the price of housing and doing a lot more of this handing out of dole oriented type home subsidizing, while many of the hard working middle class folks have had to leave. Seems very, very wrong. It also accentuates the division of rich versus poor and no middle. And as someone so eloquently shared drags down the WHOLE community. For the record it is NOT rich conservatives or middle class or poor conservatives either that come up with and implement these socialist/communist, gov't is your momma and your daddy laws and regulations that reward dependency and lack of work ethic of this sort.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greenchili View Post
I think its too late for CA to fix the problem of welfare. Its broke and
way beyond fixing. When we first moved back to CA about 6 yrs ago
to Lompoc CA, we really didnt know about Sec 8, our realtor didnt tell
us either. We bought a house in an ok neigborhood(for Lompoc) but
didnt realize it had Sec 8 two streets over. They are everywhere in this
town. We sold and thank God got a decent price a couple months back.
But now we KNOW what to look for in a neighborhood. And boy, do those
Sec 8 people know how to work the system or should I say OUR tax
dollars.


Greenchili

Last edited by fairweathergolfer; 07-14-2007 at 11:27 PM..
 
Old 07-15-2007, 12:49 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara
627 posts, read 2,784,087 times
Reputation: 411
Excellent find and post VickyVicky! These actions by Antelope Valley are inspiring and hopeful. I like how they ended up realizing they weren't getting the help they needed by the investigators in the program and funded their own. Now that is an active solution!

These folks care about their community. It also probably helps valid residents that are on Section 8 that are disabled, as people will be less likely to think they are getting one over on the system or if one suspects something is up, they are confident reporting, knowing something eventually will be done if there are violations.

Great post. Thanks.
 
Old 07-15-2007, 04:48 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, Az
82 posts, read 330,128 times
Reputation: 54
Hey all,
That post can be found online at the Internet version of the paper. My mom saved me the hardcopy and they actually printed up MAPS of Palmdale and Lancaster with black dots where all the Section 8 homes are, very similar to the Registry for Sex offenders. Its not exact addresses but gives you the general vicinity and major cross streets... REALLY AN EYE OPENER!

Palmdales Section 8 homes are very scattered, Lancasters are in Clusters. MANY close together. If you can get a copy of the paper do so! I have it saved should anyone want to inquire.
 
Old 07-20-2007, 01:36 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, Az
82 posts, read 330,128 times
Reputation: 54
Another news story from Antelope Valley Press columnist William P. Warford

July 20, 2007

In our ongoing effort to shine a light on the Section 8 Housing abuse, we present a couple of gems that were uncovered by investigators and law enforcement in the last few days.......

Acting on tips from the public, investigators accompanied by sheriff's deputies for protection go to the homes and check them to see if unauthorized persons such as parolees are living there, if the renter is receiving unreported income, or if drugs are in the home.
The toll free hotline to report abuse is 877-881-7233

If investigators find reason to recommend termination, the renter still has the right to a hearing before losing the housing voucher.

A woman in Quartz Hill lives with her 3 minor kids in a house that rents for $1,272 a month, with $974 of that being paid by the taxpayer subsidy. Her income, according to the housing authority reports on her application, is about $15,000 in welfare and social security payments. No one else is listed on the lease, just the woman and three kids.

Neighbors have noticed a husband/boyfriend living in the house and there are several nice vehicles including a 2006 Ford, a 2007 Dodge 35000 crew crab diesel truck, a 1999 Mercedes SUV and a customized 1970 Chevy El Camino. The man is also spotting driving a Hummer. The vehicles have a combined value of $200,000.

The woman and her husband/boyfriend, who is living there but is not on the lease, turn out to be the co owners of not one but two successful businesses. During and interview with welfare fraud investigators, the man admits that on a slow month he takes in $20,000 cash only.

So the income is at least $240,000 cash a year and cars worth 200 grand and they still feel compelled to take in an additional 15 grand in welfare and social security, and almost $12,000 a year in Section 8 housing subsidies.

The housing authority recommends termination from the Section 8 program, The LA County DA Welfare Fraud division is investigating and something tells me the IRS will want a word with these folks over the $240,000 a year cash only business.

Then theres the case of the woman who on her application checked the "No" box to the question "Have you or anyone in your family been convicted of a crime?" Criminals arent welcome on Section 8, and you can't lie on your application.

She maybe forgot her own arrrests on coke and marijuana busts. That could happen - anybody could forget that, huh? But how about her husbands either felony arrests and the three misdemeanor arrests? How about the husbands doing a murder as a 15 yr old juvenile? How about her husbands arrests since 2001, while theyve been on Section 8?
This lovely couple got a home in the Anaverde tract in Palmdale. They have a new Hummer and a Mercedes, and she works, making $33,000a year and they have two kids on Social Security payments.

They pay $1200 a month in rent, we the taxpayers pay $500. The couple were recommended for termination.

Other highlights of recent investigations have included a third generation Section 8 Voucher holders, and 2 cases of career criminals who were illegal immigrants living in Section 8 housing because their wives were somehow approved. The guys were documented gang members but their wives slipped through the application process.

As reported in Sundays Valley Press, housing investigators in the AV are making great progress in finding and booting out the abusers. Thats good because it saves taxpayers money and it also frees up housing for decent people who really need it as a way to get back on their feet, the way the program was intended. The inspections not only bust the one who are caught in the act, they also act as a deterrent to those who are also ripping off the system or thinking about it.
 
Old 07-20-2007, 02:42 PM
 
8,262 posts, read 26,271,337 times
Reputation: 4390
There is a Section 8 house on my block. It's a 2-story 5BR with a large yard. It's really just like any other rental, it's not terribly well-kept but not a disaster. The renters are usually families with lots of kids. They can be noisy sometimes but it's just kid noise. The families tend to be very young generally.

Often times they barely / rarely work. The last family had no fewer than 5 kids, 3 late model cars, and Dad never worked a day. From the outside they are barely distinguishable from any family in my working-to-middle-class neighborhood.

It's not particularly cheap either - the sec 8 list rent is 2400/mo but the market rent is 3600/mo. That's more than my mortgage. Even with a voucher whoever is living there will need more than Social Security, disability, whatever to pay the rent.

It's not really a problem anymore than any rental would be a problem. I think you have problems when you are talking about entire apartment buildings. That's when you get the micro-ghettos.
 
Old 07-20-2007, 04:07 PM
 
2,197 posts, read 6,709,638 times
Reputation: 1685
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sassberto View Post
There is a Section 8 house on my block. It's a 2-story 5BR with a large yard. The renters are usually families with lots of kids. They can be noisy sometimes but it's just kid noise. Often times they barely / rarely work. The last family had no fewer than 5 kids, 3 late model cars, and Dad never worked a day.
I think you've identified most of the problems people have with these buildings: a lot of people making a lot of noise. Because they don't work, they're home all the time, making noise. There are more people per unit, more cars on the street, more noise flowing all day, every day, from their place to their neighbors.

These factors can be a real lifestyle mismatch with working folks who live nearby and desperately want a little peace and quiet in the few hours a day they're home from working 12/6 to pay their ridiculous mortgage. Noise, high density and inconsideration do not make good neighbors.

Not all Section 8 rentals present these problems, but the majority seem to and that's what has bred the general dissatisfaction. That, and way too many people seem to be abusing a system meant to help those really need and deserve it... and all too often don't get it.
 
Old 07-20-2007, 07:40 PM
 
Location: SoCal
126 posts, read 183,436 times
Reputation: 147
Default Section 8 in your neighborhood?

Let me start by saying I am in Lancaster also. I have heard this Valley referred to as "North Compton" on many occasions. I think this town is being written off.

I try to be a compassionate person and I try to remember there are a lot of people out there who do need help and are receiving help from various government programs.

The problem with any government program is the lack of follow-up by these agencies to make sure the people on assistance actually deserve the assistance. We all know if there is a program for cut-rate rent, people will come out of the woodwork to benefit from it. This county is full of people who are looking to cheat the system any way they can.

Since we know that is what we're up against, why don't we come at it from another angle? If an investor owns a home and wants to rent it out as Section 8, great, make as much money as you can. These investors are in this for the money, they don't care about your neighborhood or my neighborhood. If the investor lets the income property go to s**t, it will cost him/her. Maybe the property and/or the investor will no longer be eligible for the program. Maybe if there was a standard set, any home falling below that standard is now out of the system. And I'm talking zero tolerance, no second chances. Every tenant better be checked into because the city won't hold the tenant responsible, they should hold the investor responsible. Dabbling in real estate now becomes a true gamble.

Maybe, eventually, homeowners will take over again and we can have some pride in our city once more.

Shelley
 
Old 07-20-2007, 09:06 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, Az
82 posts, read 330,128 times
Reputation: 54
Shelley,
Great post! I keep talking to my mom about this, we both reside in Lancaster, she is a long time resident, My parents owned apartments from the 60s until a few years ago(they sold them all during the real estate boom) A slum lord from LA Bought 30 of the units. My parents kept that area cleaned up for so long, they didnt partake in the section 8 program, my mom screened everyone really well and she was present on the grounds daily. Now the places have had loads of cops, I think they were sweeping the area the last few mos cleaning out.

They keep telling me its the landlords. And I have to admit, the owner of the places that are now Section never show up, dont see them checking in, code enforcement has to contact them due to poor care of the yards, broken windows, etc and thats the only time a lawn gets mowed. Other then that they only show up when the people are out and they have to clean the place up, then they dissappear until the next renter leaves. The landlords do have to be help responsible. I AGREE!
 
Old 07-21-2007, 02:13 AM
 
26,579 posts, read 52,073,429 times
Reputation: 20358
Default Units must be inspected yearly.

Per HUD... Units MUST be inspected at least once every 12 months and if a unit fails Federal HQS (Housing Quality Standards), the owner and tenant are put on notice and given "X" number of days to remedy the problem.

For some items it can be as short as 72 hours... such as a non-working heating system... other items, such as paint, can be as much as 30 days.

HQS items do not generally apply to "Cosmetic" issues... in other words... peeling paint is a HQS item whereas a unit painted purple would not be.

Any unit found not in compliance, beyond the time given to repair, shall have the HUD rent subsidy abated... Abated rent is forfeited and CAN NOT be recovered at a later date once repairs have been completed.

Until recently, Section 8 was very concerned about Tenant caused damages because the Housing Authority was responsible for up to two months of the rent subsidy for these damages. HUD did away with this provision due to the high number of claims being made.

HQS items are minimum standards... you might be surprised that many units fail initial move-in inspection or the property owner decides the repairs are not worth making solely to join the program.

Making the Owner totally responsible sounds great in concept... however, tenants have rights and something as simple as asking a family to move can easily turn into a costly and drawn out legal process. Remember, the Federal Government, acting through the local Housing Authority established under the auspicious of the city or county is solely responsible for determining a family's eligibility... and not the property owner.

It definitely has become more challenging to be in the Residential Rental Business... if it were truly as easy as some people seem to think... I guess everyone would be doing it.

The trend is for large Real Estate Holding Companies to shift away from residential rentals entirely in favor of commercial property or to limit exposure by only operating in up scale areas. Commercial Rentals are not subject to Habitability issues and are generally a business to business transaction.

The Federal Government's foray into low-income housing Projects as builder, owner and manager has been dismal... The Section 8 program arose as a means for the Government to provide housing at a lower cost per family and limit it's liability.

There is a strong movement to add Section 8 recipients as a "Protected Class" such as Race and National Origin. This would make it illegal to refuse to rent to a family because they receive Section 8 assistance.

Last edited by Ultrarunner; 07-21-2007 at 02:38 AM..
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