Housing Quality Standards

HUD regulations require BCHA to inspect all potential Housing Choice Voucher units to ensure they are “decent, safe and sanitary” according to Federal Housing Quality Standards (“HQS”). No unit can be leased through the Housing Choice Voucher Program unless it meets these standards.

Please note that the following is only a general checklist of requirements. Broward County Housing Authority will cite, require correction, and act upon observable conditions of mold, and BCHA may reject units with lead or asbestos. Click here to request more information about property inspections.

Building Exterior

  • Roof, gutter, fascia, and foundation wall are all structurally sound and weather tight.
  • Walls are free of peeling paint and graffiti.
  • Windows work properly, are weather tight and lockable.
  • All exterior windows designed to open have screens.
  • Porches have guardrails in accordance with building codes.
  • Stairs with four or more steps have handrails in accordance with building codes.
  • Exterior doors have locks designed for exterior use and of sufficient quality to support the weight of the door.
  • All units with pools MUST be clean, sanitary and secured by either a screen enclosure or a fence with a minimum height of 48” (4 feet). A gate latch must be equipped with a self-closing, self-latching mechanism to ensure safety.


  • Lawn and storage areas are free of garbage, debris.
  • Adequate ground covering, preferably grass, is laid.
  • No overgrown vegetation such as weeds.
  • Lawn and shrubs are properly edged and trimmed on a regular basis.
  • Limited soil erosion.
  • Fencing, if any, is in good repair and free of graffiti.


  • All utilities are on and operating safely.
  • Water heater is properly installed and operating; equipped with a correct temperature-pressure relief valve according to the manufacturer's specifications, and those specifications are posted near the heater so they can be verified by the inspector. A discharge pipe is installed on the valve within six (6) inches of the ground.
  • Plumbing is properly installed, leak-free and vented in accordance with building codes.
  • Air conditioning system is properly installed and operational.
  • Heating system is properly installed and operational.
  • Buildings have properly marked fire exits that meet building codes.
  • No exposed wires or open electrical panels.
  • Pilot lights on gas stoves are in proper working order.
  • All gas appliances have been serviced annually.

Dwelling Unit

  • Walls are clean, painted and free from holes, peeling, chipping or loose paint.
  • Unit is free of any trash or debris.
  • All appliances (e.g., stove, refrigerator) are clean and operable.
  • Each bedroom has at least two electrical outlets or one electrical outlet and an overhead light.
  • Each bedroom has a window, and, if designed to be opened, the window operates properly.
  • Stairs with four or more steps have handrails in accordance with building codes.
  • If the unit has two (2) or more bedrooms, the floor plan permits access to the bathrooms and commonly used rooms without passage through a bedroom.
  • Electrical outlets, switches, and light fixtures meet building codes.
  • Bathroom doors have functioning locks.
  • Doors are installed where required throughout the unit.
  • Smoke alarms are installed on each level of the unit and are operational.
  • Carbon monoxide detectors are installed in all units with gas appliances.
  • Carpet and rugs are clean and free of stains and tears and does not pose a tripping hazard.
  • Security bars, if provided, are a properly installed break-away type.
  • Windows and doors are operable and are not blocked, nailed shut or in any other condition that would prevent egress.
  • Unit is free of mold and mildew.
  • No propane, natural or methane gas odor is detectable.
  • No sewer odor is detectable.
  • No evidence of insect or vermin presence.

Broward County Housing Authority adheres to the Code of Federal Regulations at Title 24 Part 982 Sections 404, 405 and 406; applicable HUD Handbooks; and HUD supplements in order to determine, enforce, and monitor the acceptable criteria for HQS.