The Most Northeastern City in the United States.

Income and Rent Calculation

Caribou Municipal Building
25 High St
Caribou, Maine 04736
Phone: (207) 493-4234
Fax: (207) 376-0178


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Home>Section 8 Participants>Information for Program Participants>Income and Rent Calculation



In the Section 8 Program, the amount of rent you pay is directly tied to your monthly income.  Caribou Housing Authority will calculate your TTP (Total Tenant Payment), the amount of money you pay for housing.


The first step in setting your rent is determining your household income.  You are required to report money receive from all sources for all household members.  Your income is determined using your gross income (total amount), not your net income (amount remaining after certain taxes and deductions).

Income CHA will Count Income CHA will NOT Count
Employment (Gross) Live-in aide’s income
Net business income Foster children/adult’s income
Net income from real estate or personal property Employment income of children under 18 years of age
Monthly gifts or contributions (in the form of money or the actual item) Employment income above $480 per year for full-time students 18 years of age or older
Unemployment Food Stamps
Pensions Adoption care income above $480 per year, for each child
Child Support
Worker’s Compensation
General Assistance
Social Security Benefits
Military Pay
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Assets – Income from assets (checking account, savings account, stocks, bonds, CD’s)

TANF Income Reduction

If a family member receives TANF income and the amount is reduced due to fraud or a violation of the welfare agency’s rules, CHA will continue to count the original income amount.  For example, if a family received $500 a month in benefits from a welfare agency, but the agency reduced the payment to $300 a month because of fraud, CHA will still count the income source as $500 a month. CHA will verify the amount, the terms and the reason for the payment reduction with the welfare agency.


Your adjusted income is determined by subtracting HUD approved deductions from your gross income.

Dependent $480 

  • For each child under the age of 18 years
  • For each child 18 years and older, who are full-time students
  • For each adult (excluding head of household and spouse) who has disabilities
Elderly/Disabled Family $400 – One time deduction if

  • The head of household, or spouse, is 62 or older OR
  • The head of household is disabled
Childcare Applies if the child is under 13 and it enables an adult to work or go to college.

  • Cannot use if childcare is paid for by another agency
Disability Assistance OR
Medical Equipment
Applies if the head of household, or spouse is elderly or disabled.  The cost of expenses must exceed 3% of annual income and expense must not be paid by insurance, Medicare, Medicaid or another agency.



The landlord will request a rent amount.  CHA will compare the landlord’s request to the Payment Standards, released annually by HUD, and rent reasonableness.  The if the landlord does not agree to a reasonable amount, the unit will not be approved for the Section 8 Program.  The amount of rent the landlord charges for the unit is call the contract rent.


The Payment Standard that determines the size and type of unit you are eligible for includes a utility allowance.  This amount is determined based on an average amount in the area, along with which utilities you are responsible to pay.  This is to assure that your payment for rent as well as utilities is affordable.  Reviewed once a year, your payment may change based on cost of living adjustments.


The minimum amount of rent you will pay is $50 a month. 


Maximum Family TTP


Maximum Rent Assistance provided by CHA

(Payment Standard – TTP)

Affordable Rent and Utilities

(CHA assistance + 30% of monthly adj. income)


Maximum Affordable Rent and Utilities

(CHA assistance + 40% of monthly adj. income)



$697 – $468 =


$229 + $468 =



$229 +$627 =   










In this example, the family should look for a unit with rent plus utilities (or rent that includes utilities) at $697 to $856.


You need to have an idea of how much of your rent will be paid by CHA and how much you will be responsible for.  CHA will let you know these amounts in advance.  Your total monthly housing costs will include both the monthly rent paid to the owner (your portion and CHA’s portion) and any monthly utility expenses.  The maximum amount of rent that CHA will pay on your behalf is based on the current Payment Standards issued by HUD.  CHA will pay no more than the Payment Standard minus your Total Tenant Payment (the amount CHA determines you can afford to pay toward rent and utilities).

NOTE:  If you want to rent a 3-bedroom unit for your family, but am only eligible for a 2-bedroom, CHA will use the 2-bedroom Payment Standard.

Keep in mind that CHA cannot calculate the exact amount of the rent (your portion of the rent and utilities added to CHA’s portion) until you choose a unit and turn in a completed Landlord Package.


Example – Jane Smith

CHA uses a specific set of calculations to determine a participant’s Total Tenant Payment (TTP). The following scenario demonstrates these calculations for our example participant, Jane Smith.

  • Jane is a single mother of two boys.  She works part-time at $10 / hour, 24 hours per week every week; and receives $559 a month in child support
  • She qualifies for a 2-bedroom unit.
  • The Payment Standard for a 2-bedroom unit is $697
  • The family would like to rent a 2-bedroom unit
  • The Utility Allowance for the unit the family selected is $50
  • The Contract Rent for the unit is $675
Total Annual Income $10 x 24 x 52 =

$599 x 12 =


 +      7,188


Adjusted Monthly Income

Total Annual Income

Total Allowances

Adjusted Monthly Income



$480 x 2 =



–            960


Total Tenant Payment (TTP) higher of:

Total Monthly Income

10% of Monthly Gross Income


Total Adjusted Monthly Income

30% of Monthly Adjusted Income


Minimum Rent


Total Tenant Payment


$19,668 / 12 =

10% x $1,639 =


$18,708 / 12 =

30% x $1,559 =













Gross Rent

Lower of Gross Rent or Payment Standard

Total Tenant Payment

Total Housing Assistance Payment

Total Family Share

HAP to Owner

 Lower of Rent to Owner or Total HAP

Tenant Rent to Owner

$675 + 50 =



$697 – $468 =

$725 – $229 =



$675 – $229 =









In this scenario, the unit that Jane choose is affordable. 

Her share of rent will be $446

Caribou Housing Authority will be contributing $229

Towards the contract rent of $675