Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority - Enriching Lives in the Community for 80 Years

Facebook icon

Twitter logo

LinkedIn logo

Instagram logo

YouTube logo

Follow us

Department Navigation

Printer icon

Public Housing Application Information

Persons interested in applying for CMHA Public Housing may do so by completing an application at the location listed below:


CMHA Administrative Campus
8120 Kinsman Road
Cleveland, Ohio 44104
(216) 361-3700
Directions to this location.


Submit Pre-Application online


Download the Public Housing Reasonable Accommodation Application PDF


What To Bring When Applying

All applicants for CMHA public housing must be 18 years of age or older, or an emancipated minor, and must provide the following information when making application:

  • Picture ID for each person 18 years of age or older (current state ID or driver's license)

  • Birth certificates and social security cards for each adult and child who will be living in the apartment. (additional information on replacement social security cards and related information)

  • Present and past landlords. Please provide the names, addresses (street, city, state, zip code), and phone numbers of all landlords for the past 5 years.

  • Applicants who have lived in public housing or Housing Choice Voucher Program housing previously, need to provide the address and dates of their residence.

  • Divorced applicants must provide a copy of the divorce decree.

  • Pregnant or disabled applicants must provide a doctor's statement.


CMHA will also need to verify applicants' income and assets. Please provide documentation for any of the following items that apply:

  • Employment Income

  • School Verification

  • Veterans Benefits

  • Annuity(ies)

  • Foreclosure

  • Child Support Orders

  • Social Security Income

  • Pension (Retirement)

  • Bank Account Verification

  • TANF Benefits Printout

  • Supplemental Security Income

  • Railroad Retirement

  • Home Value (Tax statements/appraisals)

  • Unemployment Benefits

  • No-Income Statement

  • Self-Employment Verification



Approximate waiting list times vary by bedroom size, type of unit (family vs. High Rise) and admission preferences. An Intake Specialist contacts applicants once their name comes to the top of the waiting list for the appropriate bedroom size. Applicants should contact CMHA if there is a change in their address or any other information previously provided to CMHA which might affect their waiting list status.


When Are Applicants Notified of Eligibility?

Once CMHA determines applicants are eligible, they are notified in writing and their names put on a waiting list, unless CMHA is able to offer housing immediately. CMHA contacts applicants once their names reach the top of the list. Any applicants determined to be ineligible will receive an explanation telling them why, but are free to request an informal hearing on the decision.


Do Applicants Have To Sign A Lease?

All applicants must sign a lease if they are offered and accept housing with CMHA (a security deposit may be required). Prospective residents should review the lease with a CMHA representative to gain a better understanding of their responsibilities as a tenant as well as CMHA's responsibilities as a landlord.


Are There Any Selection Preferences?

  1. There are eight (8) preference categories that are either ranked as “high priority” or “standard”:
    1. High Priority preferences – these five (5) preference categories will give qualifying families priority on the waiting list over any other applicants:
      1. Successful completion of a substance abuse treatment or supportive housing program housed within or in partnership with CMHA, and continued drug and alcohol free status by head of household, within one year of application;
      2. Victims of governmentally declared natural disasters;
      3. Involuntary displacement;
      4. Individuals aging out of Foster Care, through age 21 at time of application; and
      5. Participation in the County’s Pay for Success Intervention Model for Family Unification.
    2. Standard preferences – these three (3) preference categories will give qualifying families priority on the waiting list below those applicants with a high priority preference but ahead of those applicants with no preference:
      1. Homelessness, with a referral letter from a recognized homeless shelter;
      2. Working families, including those unable to work because of age or disability; and
      3. Veterans and veteran’s families.
    3. Non-preference – if the applicant does not qualify for any of the preference categories, the applicant will be considered a “Non-preference” family.


Fair Housing Information

The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing because of:

  • Race or color

  • National origin

  • Religion

  • Sex

  • Familial status (including children under the age of 18 living with parents or legal custodians; pregnant women and people securing custody of children under 18)

  • Disability


Fair Housing Links


U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development


  • Provides assistance for those who have been trying to buy or rent a home or apartment and believe their rights have been violated.


The National Fair Housing Advocate Online


  • A resource designed to serve both the fair housing advocacy community and the general public with timely news and information regarding the issues of housing discrimination.


Cleveland Tenants Organization (CTO)


Housing Choice Voucher Program Application Information

If your family's name is on the CMHA waiting list, we will begin to process your application when your name comes to the top of the list.


You cannot, however, sign up for the HCVP Program at CMHA unless you were a successful "winner" in the lottery. Due to funding limitations, the HCVP waiting list is presently closed to new applicants. When it reopens, announcements will appear in the newspaper along with directions on how to apply for the lottery.


You may apply for HCVP anywhere in the country where there is a housing authority with an open waiting list. Some housing authorities require you to live in their jurisdiction or area for the first year, and others allow you to use the Section 8 voucher anywhere you want right away. You must check the policy of the housing authority where you apply. A list of other housing authorities in the United States is on the HUD web page at


Project-Based Waiting Lists
Several project-based waiting lists remain open with preferences for families meeting certain criteria:


Intergenerational – This preference applies to applicants who are adults 55 years of age and older with legal custody of one or more minor children. 
Homeless – This preference applies to homeless applicants who are applying to reside in a property designed to serve homeless households in need of supportive services.
Chronically Homeless – This preference applies to chronically homeless applicants who are applying to reside in a property designed to serve chronically homeless households in need of supportive services.
Single Room Occupancy (SRO) Moderate Rehabilitation – This preference applies to homeless applicants. 


Project-based housing is different than the tenant-based voucher program that most people know.  Project-based housing assistance is attached to certain specific buildings and does not transfer to private landlords in the first year. 


The Housing Choice Voucher tenant-based waiting list remains closed.

topTop of page icon