In accordance with the Quality Housing and Work Responsibility Act of 1998, public housing residents are now afforded a choice, annually, whether to pay rent based on their income or to pay a flat rent based on the rental value of the unit. Up to this time, rent was based on thirty percent of their adjusted income. In order to determine a comparable flat rent for each size apartment, the Housing Authority hired a real estate appraisal firm to conduct a study of comparable rents for Trent Court and Craven Terrace. On November 1, 2015, the second round of new flat rent phase-in was made effective. HUD Notice PIH mandated flat rents based on Section 8 fair market rents. It also prohibited annual increases over 35% and allowed a 3-year phase-in period to allow new rents to reach the Section 8 figure.
*As always, upon re-certification, households should be presented with the option to go flat rent or income-based, whichever is less. For any questions, feel free to call the office @ 252-633-0800.
Annual reexaminations are conducted to update income and family size, and to establish the amount of rent that will be charged monthly. At the annual reexamination, each head of household will be given the opportunity to select the method by which their rent will be set either income based rent or a flat rent. At the annual reexamination, a resident who selects income based rent will be required to provide income information which will be verified by the Housing Authority. Upon income verification, the rent will be set in accordance with the current HUD regulations.
A resident who elects income-based rent must participate in a reexamination each year to update all information. When a resident selects the flat rent method (usually because the income-based method would require a rent higher than the flat rent amount), reporting of income and the verification thereof will only be required every three years. However, other information normally updated annually will continue to be updated annually. If requested by head of household, Housing Authority staff will review the current income in order to advise the resident of their options to continue with the flat rent or reverting to income based rent. After the rent has been set for each household following the annual reexamination, any resident may request to be reexamined throughout the year due to changing circumstances. At that time, the head of household may select either rent method.
Updates to the utility allowances and utility charges were accepted by resolution by the Board of Commissioners of the Housing Authority of the City of New Bern. The allowances are posted in the lobby at the Trent Court and Craven Terrace offices. The excess utility charges approved by the Board changes the cost of excess electricity to $0.10 per kilowatt-hour and changes the cost of excess natural gas therm to $1.25. The rate changes are effective starting July 1, 2009. The first notice of excess charges (where applicable) will be included with the August Account Statement. The first Account Statement to reflect the increase in charges will be the September statement.