The tenant is responsible for paying the security deposit.
The section 8 department might not start paying RIGHT AWAY, but whenever they start, they will pay back rent starting from the month that the tenant moved in. From that point on, Section 8 will send the rent payment at the beginning of every month.
Also remember, that each section 8 recipient is different. You may have some tenants who aren't required to pay anything out of pocket because they don't have any income, and you will have other tenants who have income, and they are required to pay a portion of their rent. When that happens, section 8 will still make their monthly payment to you at the beginning of every month, but you need to make sure that the tenant understands that he/she is obligated to pay the remaining portion of the rent by ___ of each month.
The inspection process is not a long process as long as the house/apartment is in good shape, however, they are particular about certain things (ex. smoke detectors on every floor, no broken steps or cement in front of house, no cracks in the walls, etc.....) The inspector will only inspect the unit that the tenant will live in, and around the outside of the unit. They will also check the basement, even if its an apartment building. After the initial inspection, if the inspector finds any problems with the place, they will give the landlords written notice of the problems, and give the landlord 30 days to fix the problems. Once the problems are fixed (within that 30 days), they will come out and do a second inspection. If the problem is not fixed the second time, they will NOT give the tenant approval to move into that place.
Technically, the tenant is not allowed to move into the home prior to inspection. So, if you as the landlord allows this, then the tenant will be responsible for the rent during that time. Section 8 will only pay starting from the time that EVERYTHING has been approved, and they gave the tenant the "ok" to move in.
To the woman above who said "don't do this", why not? Are you going to judge someone just because they are on Section 8? Just because they are receiving section 8, does that make them bad tenants??
Honestly, the section 8 program is one of the best things for landlords because you will NEVER have an issue with getting your rent money. Depending on the tenant, your only issue might be getting the tenants portion of the rent. That's why it's important to screen your potential tenants just as you would if they weren't receiving section 8, but don't judge them just because they are on section 8. A bad tenant is a bad tenant just as a good tenant is a good tenant, regardless if they have housing subsidy or not.
The other person that responded and said section 8 tenants can bring potential problems, and the fact that they are on Section 8 is a sign that they are irresponsible is so wrong. ANY tentant could bring potential problems, Section 8 or not. Section 8 is designed to help those with low income obtain affordable, nice housing. Low Income does NOT equal "irresponsible".
I want to apologize to the asker for rambling on like this and getting off topic with your question, but it really gets up under my skin when people are so judgemental of others. These comments being made here are stereotypical.