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HQS Inspections

Any unit occupied by participant, MUST meet Housing Quality Standards (HQS). Before a lease is signed and annually thereafter, the BC/ACHA will preform a minimum HQS Inspection to ensure standards are being met. HQS is the minimum set of standards required by HUD to determine if a unit meets the qualifications of being decent, safe, and sanitary.

The following checklist is a brief outline of items the BC/ACHA Inspector will be reviewing while conducting an HQS inspection. More specific HQS requirements applicable to each unit will be explained at the initial inspection. (Usually with the landlord)


  • Are the foundation, stairs, rails, gutters, and porch sound and free of hazards or deterioration?
  • Are the chimney and other brickwork free of loose bricks and mortar?
  • If the unit was built prior to 1977 and there is a child under the age of six years, is the exterior paint free of chipping, peeling, crackling within five feet of the ground?
  • Is there a firmly secure handrail for four or more steps?


  • Are there at least two working electrical outlets, or one outlet and one light fixture?
  • Can ground floor windows be locked?
  • Are the windows and frames in good condition?
  • Are the walls, ceiling, and floors in good condition?
  • Is the space free of peeling, chipping, or cracking paint?


  • Are the stove and refrigerator working properly and large enough to meet the family's needs?
  • Is the plumbing free form leaks and working properly?
  • Is there at least one working outlet and one working permanently installed light fixture?
  • Can all windows be locked, and are they in good condition?
  • Is the space free of peeling, cracking, and/or chipping paint?
  • Is there adequate space for storage and food preparation?
  • Is there an adequate space for eating?


  • Are the tub, sink, shower, and toilet in good condition, working properly and without leaks?
  • Is there an operable, lockable window or an air vent or bath fan?
  • Are floors, ceiling, and walls clean and in good condition?
  • Is there at least one permanent light fixture in working condition?


  • Are there enough bedrooms for the family?
  • Is there a window in good condition that opens, if designed to open, in each bedroom?
  • If the bedroom is on the first floor, does the window lock?
  • Are there at least two working outlets or one outlet and one light fixture in each bedroom?
  • Are the floors, ceiling, and walls clean and in good condition?
  • Is the space, including windows, free from peeling, chipping, or cracking paint?

It is necessary for the unit where you plan to receive rental assistance PASS a housing quality standards (HQS) inspection before payments will be made. The unit will also need to pass inspection each year for rental assistance payments to continuation of payments. You must notify your housing representative if your landlord fails to make repairs with a reasonable period of time to conditions that affect the habitability of your assisted unit.

The Housing Authority will inspect the following eight areas for Housing Quality Standards (HQS)

  • Living Room
  • Kitchen
  • Bathroom(s)
  • Other Rooms used for Living
  • Outbuildings
  • Building Exterior
  • Heating and Plumbing
  • General Health and Safety
  • Garage

The following is a listing of the conditions that must be verified by the Housing Inspector:

  • All major utilities (electricity, gas, and water) must be turned on
  • The cooking stove and oven must be clean and in working condition, there must be burner control knobs
  • The refrigerator must be clean and in working condition
  • The heating unit must be properly installed and vented and otherwise in good working order
  • There must be hot and cold running water in the kitchen and bathroom(s)
  • There must be a shower or bathtub that is in good working condition
  • There must be a flush toilet that works and does not leak
  • The bathroom must have a window or working ventilation fan
  • There must be no plumbing leaks or plugged drains
  • All accessible outside doors and windows must have working locks
  • At least one exit door must be without a double keyed deadbolt lock
  • All electrical outlets must have cover plates in good condition with no cracks
  • There must be no missing, broken or badly cracked windows/window panes
  • The roof must not leak
  • The hot water tank for the unit must have a pressure relief valve and a downward discharge pipe
  • There can be no tears, holes or loose seems in carpeting or linoleum
  • Stairs and railing, inside and out, must be secure. A stairway of three (3) or more steps requires a railing
  • There can be no mice, rats, or insect infestation
  • There must be a properly operating smoke detector on every level of the unit
  • No cracking, chipping, scaling, or loose paint anywhere, inside or outside the unit if a child under the age of six (6) years resides or is expected to reside in the unit
  • No excessive debris in or around the unit, such as an accumulation of boxes, paper, trash, wood, tires, machine or auto parts, batteries, paint cans, or old appliances. Derelict vehicles must be removed from the premises

Any other deficiencies for the unit will be listed by the inspector when the unit is initially inspected. Owner packets are available at the Housing Authority.

Your initial lease is for one (1) full year. You will not be allowed to move during the initial one-year lease. You will choose you own unit; make sure it's one where you will be happy.