In a Federal Register notice this week, HUD requested comments on a planned two-year continuation of the Uniform Physical Condition Standards for Vouchers (UPCS-V) demonstration. According to the notice, the extension is necessary in order to meet congressional instructions to implement a single inspection protocol for public housing and voucher units.
HUD’s new physical inspection model will be the National Standards for the Physical Inspection of Real Estate (NSPIRE). NSPIRE is intended to improve upon the current Uniform Physical Condition Standards (UPCS) protocol by prioritizing health, safety, and functional defects. As the notice explains:
HUD is developing a single inspection standard for all units under the public housing, housing choice voucher, and multifamily programs called National Standards for the Physical Inspection of Real Estate (NSPIRE). NSPIRE will leverage the infrastructure of UPCS–V to demonstrate, test, and validate NSPIRE protocols. HUD envisions NSPIRE being used for all housing inspections.
The UPCS-V demonstration began in 2016 and currently includes more than 200 PHAs. As described in the notice, the UPCS-V demonstration extension is necessary to avoid requiring participating agencies to default to HQS standards, to gather additional data, and to allow increased PHA participation. Comments are due by July 29.