Virginia Department of Housing and Urban Development FAQs


What is the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development?

The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), is a government agency that seeks to foster community development and support homeownership. The program offers services to create more affordable rental and homeownership opportunities, prevent homelessness, combat housing discrimination and support individuals and families in need.

Why was HUD created?

HUD was founded in 1965 by Lyndon Johnson to succeed the Housing and Home Finance Agency. It was established to:

  • Promote the development of the country’s urban areas.
  • Coordinate government activities that affect housing and urban development.
  • Offer information and assistance to state and other local governments to solve development and community problems.
  • Aid in the planning and administration of community and urban development projects.
  • Promote cooperation with private enterprise to accomplish the goals of HUD.
  • Carry out studies to improve housing and urban development.

What is the mission of HUD?

HUD aims to create “strong, sustainable and inclusive” communities and make quality housing available to everyone. The program’s goals include making homeownership widely available, providing support to low-income renters, combatting discrimination in housing markets and providing housing and other support to homeless, veteran and disabled households.

Who does HUD consider “low income”?

HUD looks at an applicant’s income, in addition to other factors, to determine his or her eligibility for low income services like housing choice vouchers, housing for seniors and housing for people with disabilities. Income limits change every year based on Median Family Income estimates and Fair Market Rent area definitions for different cities.

Where can I find HUD properties in Virginia?

If a home has been acquired by the Virginia HUD, it will display a sign indicating who is managing the property before it is eligible for HUD sales. Once it has been accepted, the home will be listed on the HUD Home Store website. On this useful site, you can search for homes in Virginia by city, zip code and even street. You can also define search criteria by price range, number of bathrooms, number of bedrooms and more.

What if I cannot make my FHA mortgage payments?

If you have an FHA mortgage but cannot afford to make payments, you could be in danger of losing your home. For immediate assistance, contact an HUD-approved housing counseling agency in Virginia. You can also contact the Housing Counseling Hotline via phone.

If you are in immediate danger of foreclosure, you can reach out to the National Servicing Center for help via telephone or email.

If I am eligible for housing assistance, what other government programs might I qualify for?

Low-income individuals and families in Virginia who qualify for housing programs like Section 8 (the Housing Choice Voucher Program) may also qualify for other federal assistance programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for food assistance and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program for cash assistance.

What is the Fair Housing Act?

The Fair Housing Act is federal legislation that prohibits discrimination in renting, buying, or seeking financing for housing in Virginia or anywhere in the U.S. That means you cannot be denied housing or become subject to special pricing or terms because of your race, nationality, religion, gender, disability, parenthood or other protected status.

How do I file a Fair Housing complaint?

If you believe your housing rights have been violated on the basis of discrimination, you can contact the HUD for help. You can submit a Housing Discrimination Complaint Form online, write a letter to the HUD, or call your local HUD office. You’ll be asked to provide details about the incident and include information about you and the alleged violator.

How do I find a Virginia public housing agency?

You can contact a Virginia public housing agency (PHA) for help with issues like public housing, housing choice vouchers and more. Visit the HUD website to find a list of agencies in Virginia ordered by city or zip code. Alternatively, you can contact your local agency by phone to schedule a visit.