On May 4, 2016, in Federal Register Notices 81 FR 26759, HUD announced a new inspection and oversight approach called UPCS-V that will ultimately replace the Housing Quality Standard (HQS) inspection.
APC has over 35 years of housing inspection experience, with both HQS and UPCS inspections. APC understands what agencies want to know about the UPCS and UPCS-V inspection protocols to manage their program and successfully complete inspections. Based on our experience, APC has developed a UPCS-V inspection training which keys off of our current UPCS training that we have taught since 1999, in over 300 sessions nationwide, to over 5,000 housing personnel. Into that UPCS training we incorporate our expertise with HQS as performed using the HUD form 52580. The resulting UPCS-V training can be used to train existing HQS or UPCS inspectors as well as new inspectors.
Something that has been needed for years for HQS is detailed definitions. Without detailed definitions, Inspectors may PASS or FAIL an inspection based on personal experience and bias. HUD is attempting to eliminate this issue in the new UPCS-V definitions. Thus our UPCS-V training will have all the traditional HQS training elements (as listed in the 52580) and it will also go further by using the UPCS-V detailed definitions as further information about what HUD intends versus inspector discretion. This training will prepare your organization for both the traditional HQS as well as the future of UPCS-V.
At this time, HUD is working on the UPCS-V Protocol which will replace Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspections for the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program. Version Beta is a drastic change from the Version 2.5 UPCS-V Protocol that will align to the UPCS Protocol as published in the Federal Register, with adopted up-to-date health and safety standards, and translated to a pass/fail system. Version Beta is simplified and streamlined, using plain language, and removing confusing and misplaced information. Version Beta focuses on protocol (how a task is done, providing detailed instruction while setting rules and processes to complete the task) as opposed to policy (high level requirements that set a general program goal and acceptable procedures). Earlier versions of the UPCS-V Protocol muddied the distinction between policy and protocol by including policy information that should be in administrative plan documents in the protocol documents which should be inspection focused. The Version Beta Protocol is an alphabetized reference tool while the software will focus on the step-by-step inspection process.
The big picture is that the HQS conversion to UPCS-V is moving forward quickly and as you can see this will alter the way inspections are performed for the Housing Choice Voucher program. Given APC's current knowledge on the recent changes and our extensive HQS and UPCS experience - APC is ready to be your inspection consultant and training expert!
APC's UPCS-V 3-day training covers a short history of both HQS and UPCS leading up to the recent proposed changes that HUD has discussed for the UPCS-V inspection protocol, along with what to expect from UPCS-V in the future. Training will also include a comparison between HQS, UPCS, and UPCS-V to allow attendees to fully understand the upcoming HQS Conversion to UPCS-V, as well as an overview of the inspection process, including draft deficiency definitions and inspection results. Practical exercises will reinforce the training process with real life items that are found during the inspection. There will be ample time for questions and answers throughout the session. An open discussion at the end will leave the trainees ideas as to what they will need to do to transitioning their HQS inspection program to UPCS-V.
Combined UPCS-V & UPCS Training - APC also offers a combined 5-Day UPCS-V & UPCS Training. This training covers the history of PHAS/UPCS; the UPCS Inspection Protocol; the 5 Inspectable Areas: Site, Building Exterior, Building Systems, Common Areas, and Units, as well as Health & Safety; REAC Scoring; Appeals & Technical Reviews; Practice Exercises; the history of HQS; Proposed Changes for UPCS-V; Comparisons and Differences between UPCS, HQS, and UPCS-V; Draft Deficiency Definitions and Inspection Results; and a Transitioning Discussion.