Message of The Month

Implementation Schedule

The TRACS Release 2.0.3.A 4-month implementation schedule date was to begin February 1, 2018. This implementation date is being RESCHEDULED to the Fall of 2018 to accommodate:

  • Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval of new and revised HUD forms and associated collection of information from the public; and
  • HUD Office of Chief Information Officer (OCIO) TRACS upgrade project to allow currently unsupported Cool:Gen v6.5 software development tools to be upgraded to the current vendor supported release CA Gen v8.6.

MFH will publish a final 4-month implementation schedule once TRACS has completed: [i] User Acceptance Testing (UAT) of TRACS software upgrade with industry software vendors and [ii] OMB approval of HUD’s new and/or revised forms for the collection of information.

Testing requirements, the final TRACS Release 2.0.3.A Implementation Schedule, and stakeholders’ notifications will be posted on the TRACS documents page:

*****TRACS 2.0.3.A Fall 2018 Implementation Schedule at*****
*****TRACS 2.0.3.A Final Industry Specification Documents (1/30/2018) at*****
****TRACS 2.0.3.A PowerPoint Presentation with Notes, by EPS, Inc. is now available for download at****

RHIIP Listserv Posting #403
January 24, 2018

Updated Median Gross Rents by Zip Code ( ) are Now Available on the
Section 8 Renewal Policy Site ( ) on

Median Gross Rents are used to determine when HUD will procure a third party rent comparability study (RCS) in conjunction with Sec. 8 PBRA rent setting. Section 9-14 of the Section 8 Renewal Policy Guide provides instructions for comparing the median rents as derived by an owner’s appraiser in a RCS with Census Bureau estimates of the median rents in the project’s zip code. When the median rent in the owner’s study exceeds 140 percent of the median gross rent by zip code, then HUD must commission a third party RCS for comparison purposes.

The new median gross rents will be effective for any RCS signed by the owner’s appraiser on or after February 11, 2018.

RHIIP Listserv Posting #401
December 13, 2017

New Policy: Interim Final Rule on Streamlining Administrative Regulations and Implementing Family Income Reviews Under the FAST Act

On December 12, 2017, HUD published an interim final rule ( ) in the Federal Register that amends the regulatory language for PIH and Multifamily Housing rental assistance programs. This rule aligns the current regulatory flexibilities with those provided in the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. In addition, the interim final rule extends two of the administrative streamlining changes that were adopted in 2016 for the Housing Choice Voucher and Public Housing programs to Multifamily programs.

The interim final rule implements FAST Act provisions that allow public housing agencies (PHAs) and multifamily housing owners to conduct full income recertification for families with 90 percent or more of their income from fixed-income every three years instead of annually. This interim final rule also aligns the current regulatory flexibilities with those provided in the FAST Act by modifying the earlier streamlining regulations. This would make the procedures for families meeting the fixed-income threshold as similar as possible to families who do not have 90 percent or more of their income from fixed sources, but still have some fixed income.

In addition to streamlining fixed income stipulations, the interim final rule ( ) also indicates that an owner may:

  • Make utility reimbursements of $45 or less per quarter ($15 a month) on a quarterly basis.
  • Accept family declaration of assets under $5,000. Third-party verification of all family assets will be required every 3 years.

Although HUD is issuing these changes as an interim final rule ( ), the Department has delayed the effective date for a period of 90 days (March 12, 2018). This allows participants in Multifamily housing programs and other interested parties to submit comments during the first 30-day period following publication of the interim rule. HUD will take any comments received by January 11, 2018 into consideration and determine whether any further changes should be made before publication of a final rule. Directions on the submission of comments may be found in the Federal Register.

RHIIP Listserv Posting #395
November 2, 2017

2018 Operating Cost Adjustment Factors (OCAFs) and Utility Allowance Factors Now Available

The Operating Cost Adjustment Factors (OCAF) for 2018 were published today in the Federal Register. These factors are used for adjusting or establishing Section 8 rents under the Multifamily Assisted Housing Reform and Affordability Act of 1997 (MAHRA), as amended, for projects assisted with Section 8 Housing Assistance Payments. The factors are effective February 11, 2018 and can be found at

Utility Allowance Factors for 2018, which may be used to adjust baseline utility allowances prepared in accordance with Housing Notice 2015-04, are also now available on HUDUser at

Note to PBCAs and HUD staff processing rents adjustments using Auto OCAF: As of today, the 2018 Factors are updated in iREMS. Please delete any Amend Rents records effective 02/11/2018 and beyond that were created either automatically or manually with the old 2017 Factors. A new record will automatically generate with the new 2018 Factor. Neither PBCAs, nor submitting owners, should be penalized by HUD for delays related to the late release of 2018 factors.