CHA Statement on Waitlist Times

Jun 7, 2022

CHICAGO (June 7, 2022):

Statement from the Chicago Housing Authority in response to recent news reports about its waitlist times.

CHA has multiple waiting lists. The Housing Choice Voucher (which used to be referred to as Section 8) waitlist is closed. It last opened in 2014, after the previous waitlists were fully exhausted. At that time, there were 75,000 families added to the list.

CHA’s public housing and project-based voucher waitlists are always open and have wait times that range from as little as six months, to as much as 25 years, depending on the specific development and unit size needed. The application process and wait times can be viewed online at:

CHA has 47,000 Housing Choice Vouchers that it receives from the federal government. The number allotted has not increased in many years. We fully agree that more resources are needed to address the need for affordable housing in Chicago and around the nation.

Over the last decade, more than 95 percent of CHA’s Housing Choice Vouchers have been used. A voucher only becomes available to a new family on the waitlist after it is no longer being used by an existing voucher holder.

Since 2014, 43,000 families have been pulled from the waitlist and given an opportunity to search for housing. On average, approximately 2,400 families leave the program each year, providing an opportunity for new families to be pulled from the waitlist. Approximately 32,000 names remain on the waitlist.

About Chicago Housing Authority: The CHA’s vision is to foster strong, vibrant communities throughout Chicago by increasing affordable housing choices for low-income families. As the largest rental housing provider in the City of Chicago, CHA serves more than 133,000 people in 63,000 households across the city through our Public Housing, Housing Choice Voucher, and Project-Based Voucher programs. For more information, visit