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Rental Housing Assistance Programs

Department of Housing and Urban Development

The U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) provides rental housing assistance for eligible low-income families, elders and persons with disabilities through three main programs: Public Housing, Housing Choice Voucher, and Project-Based Rental Assistance. Participants live in housing that ranges in size and type, from single-family houses to high-rise apartments. In total, nearly 5 million low-income households participate in one of these programs that help to create opportunities for self-sufficiency and economic independence.

Agency Accountable Official: Helen Kanovsky, Acting Deputy Secretary

Program Accountable Official: Sandra B. Henriquez, Assistant Secretary, Public and Indian Housing

Program Accountable Official: Benjamin T. Metcalf, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Multifamily Housing Programs



Total Payments (Outlays)more info


Improper Paymentsmore info


Improper Payment Ratemore info


3.8% Improper Payment Rate Target more info

All amounts are in billions of dollars

Note: The Annual Error Rate is the same for both subprograms.

Tabular view for Projected improper payments Tabular View   

Program Comments

HUD sets goals and reports on the department’s progress in reducing improper payment levels annually. The error rate goal for fiscal year 2013 reporting was 3.8%.  HUD missed the goal when it attained an error rate of 4.3%. There was an increase in HUD's error rate because the population totals used in HUD's rental housing assistance programs' sampling frame to assess errors were updated to include Moving to Work Public Housing Agencies. Therefore, a portion of the changes in total gross dollar error are due to an increase in population, and not due to an increase in rent error. The error rate goal for fiscal year 2014 reporting is 4.2%. HUD’s annual improper payments calculation is based on prior year data. This performance indicator measures the annual progress HUD makes in the reduction of both under and overpayments as a percent of total payments for Rental Housing Assistance Programs. Read More...