Public Housing Reform Overview

What is public housing reform?

Public housing reform is represented through the Quality Housing and Work Responsibility Act of 1998 (QHWRA). QHWRA was signed by President Clinton on October 21, 1998 and is found in Title V of HUD's FY1999 appropriations act (P.L. 105-276).

QHWRA is landmark legislation which will make public housing reform a reality by:

  • Reducing the concentration of poverty in public housing
  • Protecting access to housing assistance for the poorest families
  • Supporting families making the transition from welfare to work
  • Raising performance standards for public housing agencies, and rewarding high performance
  • Transforming the public housing stock through new policies and procedures for demolition and replacement and mixed-finance projects, and through authorizing the HOPE VI revitalization program
  • Merging and reforming the Section 8 certificate and voucher programs, and allowing public housing agencies to implement a Section 8 homeownership program
  • Supporting HUD management reform efficiencies through deregulation and streamlining and program consolidation

Publications and legislation

Admission and occupancy

Admission and Occupancy Final Rule FAQ
A list of questions and answers on admission and occupancy.

Summary of Admissions and Occupancy Final Rule (Adobe PDF, 3 pages)
A summary of changes to the admission and occupancy requirements for the public housing and Section 8 assisted housing programs.


H.R. 4194-59 Title V Public Housing and Tenant Based Assistance Reform (Adobe PDF, 220 pages)
The actual QHWRA legislation, Title V begins at the bottom of page 58.

How does QHWRA affect Public Housing residents? (Adobe PDF, 5 pages)
An outline of parts of QHWRA that most affect residents.

Summary of the Quality Housing and Work Responsibility Act of 1998 (Adobe PDF, 28 pages)
A summary of the sections of title V of QHWRA which are applicable to public housing and PHA-administered Section 8 assistance programs.

Public Housing Reform Act Implementation (Adobe PDF, 9 slides)
A presentation on rules, notices and other guidance materials.

Public Housing Reform Act Discussion II
A briefing on the status of implementation of the public housing reform act and a panel discussion on PHA Plans. You will need a video player to view this webcast.