Home Inspections

To ensure the quality of Section 8 rentals, Home Forward conducts an inspection before you move in, and once every year or two years after that.

Our goal is to provide decent, safe, and sanitary housing to all of our participants.  If you have any questions about home inspections, please call the Home Forward Inspections Team at (503) 802-8333, option 5.

The simple housekeeping practices listed below will help you be prepared for these inspections, and create a clean and safe home for you and your family.

  • Check your smoke alarms and replace batteries as needed. For your protection smoke detectors must be hooked-up and working properly at all times.
  • Report all maintenance items to the landlord or manager prior to the inspection. The items may be able to be repaired before the annual inspection takes place.
  • Thoroughly clean your cooking range, range hood and filter - inside and out - as often as necessary.
  • Defrost and clean your refrigerator at least once a month or as needed. Never use a knife or a sharp tool to chip off ice! A pan of hot water or fan work best in speeding up the defrosting process.
  • Clean both sides of all windows regularly, as you are able.
  • Thoroughly clean and sanitize the kitchen sink, bathroom sink, tub and toilet, and remove hard-water stains on a regular basis.
  • Wash and clean walls and all painted woodwork on a regular basis.
  • Vacuum or sweep, and mop all floors on a regular basis.
  • To help prevent infestation by cockroaches, fleas, mice, rats and other disease-carriers, remove all boxes, paper, garbage and other rubbish to proper garbage and recycling containers on a regular basis. Also remember to properly dispose of discarded furniture, appliances, bulky rubbish and junked automobiles.
  • Maintain all sidewalks, lawns, shrubbery, and grounds (front, sides, flowerbeds and rear of the house/apartment) in a decent clean condition by keeping the lawn mowed, shrubbery trimmed, and free of garbage and debris.
  • Be certain that all rooms are accessible to the inspector.
  • Please have your pet contained/restrained for the time period of your inspection.

Standards for Wear and Tear: Serious Violations

If the condition of your apartment or house has deteriorated beyond normal wear and tear due to neglect or damage that you or your guests have caused, we may propose termination of your Section 8 voucher benefit. Below are items that Home Forward considers to be serious violations of the family obligations section of our agreement.

  • Destroyed walls – large holes; mold due to tenant neglect; excessive grease; graffiti
  • Destroyed floors – serious carpet stains that cannot be removed with a good cleaning (bleach, dye, paint, burns, etc.); torn tile; badly stained wood floors (holes, punctures, burns, etc.)
  • Broken light fixtures due to tenant abuse or neglect
  • Broken doors or doorjambs (holes, large gouges, etc.)
  • Broken windows due to tenant abuse
  • Overly dirty or broken appliances due to tenant abuse or neglect (stoves, refrigerators)
  • Excessive garbage and trash storage, which could cause infestation (cannot be picked up by one individual within one or two hours)
  • Turned-off utilities for which the participant is responsible
  • Broken bathroom fixtures (removed or broken tank covers, faucets, shower doors/rods)
  • Holes or stains in a ceiling due to tenant abuse or neglect
  • Flea-infestation from pets, etc., due to tenant neglect
  • Burnt countertops due to tenant abuse
  • Neglected landscape (if tenant is responsible for yard up-keep)
  • General abuse and/or neglect of rental unit by participant family
  • Any other failures of health and safety standards that are tenant-caused

Requesting an Inspection

If you have a serious complaint about the condition of your unit, tell your landlord or property manager immediately. If your complaint is not addressed and you would like Home Forward to conduct a "complaint inspection," please download and complete the Complaint Inspection Form and return it to our offices at 135 SW Ash Street, Portland, Oregon 97204.

If we feel that the landlord or property manager did not respond to your complaint in a reasonable period of time and the complaint indicates a Housing Quality Standards (HQS) deficiency, we will schedule your apartment or house for a complaint inspection.