Housing Authority

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

For the first time in four years, the housing choice voucher program – formerly known as Section 8 – has reopened its waitlist to Austin residents in need of rental assistance.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez

De Shaun Ealoms always dreamed of owning a home, but she wasn’t sure how she’d get there.

After her son was diagnosed with autism, Ealoms moved to Austin from Dallas to be closer to her parents. To help cover her living expenses, she signed up for Section 8, the commonly used name for the federal Housing Choice Voucher program, which helps low-income families pay rent.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Lisa Martinez walks around her newly renovated two-bedroom apartment at Manchaca Village, pointing out her favorite features: the blue accent wall in her living room, a new washer and dryer, and, best of all, a new dishwasher. She says it has made it much easier to clean up after her four kids.

The 33-unit apartment complex in South Austin is the first of 18 public housing properties the housing authority has renovated as part of an ambitious plan announced last year.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

The Housing Authority of the City of Austin is moving forward with a plan to renovate its public housing complexes, but some residents are concerned about where they’ll live during construction.