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Rental Property Home Inspections FAQ

Whether you are a current participating landlord or someone new to Way Finders Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers program, your unit will be required to undergo and pass an inspection before receiving any State or Federal rental subsidies.  

What prompts the need for an inspection?

  • An Initial Inspection is required of a unit prior to initiating a new lease. The unit must pass inspection before a contract between owner and tenant can be executed.
  • All units are required to be inspected annually—that is, within twelve months of the previous inspection.
  • Tenant or landlord complaints can prompt the need for an inspection.

Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires that Way Finders perform quality control inspections (Audits) on units that have recently passed. These units are selected randomly. 

What guidelines does Way Finders use for inspections?

We use the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Housing Quality Standards (HQS) with additions by the Executive Office of Housing and Livable Communities (EOHLC). These additions address Massachusetts Lead Paint Laws, heating guidelines, as well as plumbing and electrical codes.

I recently bought a property and was given a letter of lead compliance but Way Finders will not accept it. Why?

At times we receive Letters of Compliance that the owner perceives to be legal.  However, we find that dates, addresses and even signatures have been altered or that the document submitted is a time sensitive document and has expired.

When you receive a Letter of Compliance (LOC) through the purchase of property, you should call the inspector who signed it to make sure it’s valid and/or check with Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH)/Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (CLPPP) to make sure it is valid.

I have a valid LOC but the inspector required me to get a new inspection due to defective/peeling paint.

Your original LOC will be valid as long as there is no defective/peeling paint. Once there is defective paint over certain levels you must obtain a Post Compliance Assessment Determination (PCAD) to maintain compliance.

What is Way Finders' policy of rent payment suppressions and abatements?

All government subsidized units are to be in compliance with health and safety regulations at all times.  Should a unit not be in compliance at any time we are obligated to stop all rent payments.

Should your unit fail to be in compliance with Housing Quality Standards (HQS) at the annual inspection, you will be given 30 days to make repairs. Way Finders will schedule a re-inspection to take place after the 30 day period. Should the unit fail again, rent payments will be suppressed, and when released, be abated or reduced at a rate of 2% to 100% depending on the types of violations, time not in compliance, and landlord history of abatements. 

What about tenant caused damage/violations?

Our inspectors make every effort to determine tenant caused damage/violations. Once determined to be tenant caused, tenants are notified of their responsibility to correct or face the possibility of contract termination and potential loss of subsidy.

How can I prepare for an inspection?

Rental units are required to be in compliance at all times. Frequent visits to your units by yourself or a knowledgeable representative along with ongoing proactive maintenance are imperative and will ensure you maintain compliance.