Housing Counseling System

This page contains information on the Housing Counseling System (HCS). Select a topic to find relevant guidance and resources.

Email to Obtain an ID and Password for Log in and Assistance.

Learn more about how Housing Counseling Agencies can leverage technology in their counseling delivery.

Log In to HCS

Note: HCS is a separate website from the HUD Exchange. If you have trouble accessing HCS, follow the instructions on the Technical Support section of this page.

Request an HCS Password Reset

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Housing Counseling System (HCS) is a real-time web application that manages the counseling program data. It maintains the list of agencies, collects client data, processes grant applications, and provides performance reports. Click the link above to activate the access login page. (It is recommended that you don't bookmark the HCS log-in page but you should instead bookmark this page in order to access HCS.)


  1. Agencies are required to submit their data electronically into HCS using a HUD authorized Client Management System (CMS) of their choice from the approved list posted in HCS.
  2. Agencies are responsible for ensuring their data is submitted on time, complete, and accurate.
  3. Agencies are required to validate their data at least once every 90 days.
  4. HUD Office of Housing Counseling staff are responsible for ensuring that their assigned agencies comply.
  5. Agencies are categorized on a Risk scale taking into consideration their HCS compliance and other factors.

HCS Data

All agencies are required to provide HUD access to housing counseling data to allow monitoring of their Housing Counseling program. This data will be submitted by the agency into the Housing Counseling System (HCS). Due to the amount of data, each agency must incorporate in their housing counseling process a Counseling Application to collect data and electronically transmit the data into HCS. A list of required data agencies are responsible to provide to HCS is available in the Resources section as CMS Submission Data Requirements. All agencies are required to access HCS to verify that the data submitted is complete and accurate. To ensure data is correct, all agencies must validate their HCS profile a minimum of once every 90 days signifying that they acknowledge the information posted is to their satisfaction.

HCS PII Removal Notification for Housing Counseling Agencies

In accordance with Federal requirements and recommended best practices for managing Personal Identifiable Information (PII), HUD regularly reviews the data it collects and stores. Learn more about how HUD protects PII.

HUD has reviewed the Housing Counseling System (HCS). As a result of this review, HUD has determined that some PII data fields are unnecessary and will no longer be collected and stored. HUD will modify the HCS system to no longer collect unneeded PII.

The full removal of unneeded PII is a two phase process:

  • Phase 1: No changes will be required of Client Management System (CMS) vendors to continue to submit data to HCS/ARM. The ARM V5 XML schema will be changed so that all the fields being removed will be optional if they are not already. If a submission contains any of these fields, the fields will be ignored and will not be stored in HCS.
  • Phase 2: CMS vendors will be required to remove these fields from their HUD HCS/ARM submissions. The fields listed will be removed entirely from the ARM V6 XML schema to align with the schedule for the updates CMS will be making to support the new 9902 reporting format for FY 2022. An updated ARM V6 XML schema will be shared with CMS vendors.

HUD is working with CMS vendors to ensure that these modifications do not impede the functionality of HCS and CMS systems.


As of fiscal year 2008, all agencies are required to utilize an automated counseling application of their choice. The application is generally referred to as the “Client Management System (CMS)”. The purpose of the CMS is to automate counseling services, store client data, and interface with the HCS Agency Reporting Module to submit required data to HUD. A HUD-approved CMS can submit agency data in XML format directly from the agencies’ internal systems to HCS. Agencies can develop or select any CMS of choice so long as the CMS is approved by HUD.

Please visit the CMS Requirement Guidance for more information and for a list of HUD-compatible CMS products.

When submitting data from a CMS to HCS, agencies must follow a specific procedure to ensure their data submissions are transmitted successfully. CMS have been instructed to allow transmitting data in four (4) separate sets to allow flexibility and reliability in the submission of data. The data sets agencies can send to HCS are: Agency Profile, Counselor Profile, HUD-9902 Performance Reports (Form 9902), and Client Profile. Agencies must submit the data sets in the following order:

  1. Submit agency profile data. Once successfully submitted, the agency profile data is only required to be submitted when updates to the data are available. Submitting agency data is the step that sets the agency’s CMS designation in HCS. This allows HUD to identify that the agency is in compliance.
  2. Submit counselor profile data. Counselor data must be successfully submitted to HCS prior to submitting Form 9902 and Client data. Once successfully submitted, the Counselor Profile data is only required to be submitted when updates to the data are available.
  3. Submit Form 9902 and Client Profile data quarterly. The Form 9902 and Client Profile submissions should always be submitted by the quarterly reporting due date. HUD will compare the Client data with the Form 9902 report to validate reporting accuracy.
  4. Confirm data successfully submitted. Agencies are required to manually access HCS to confirm the data transmitted is correct and complete. Agencies should mark the validation on the quarterly Form 9902 in HCS to show proof of verification.

System Requirements

HUD recommends using Microsoft Windows 7 and Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) 10 to access HCS. Minor loss of functionality may occur while HCS is accessed via different browsers and operation systems.


Agencies submit their quarterly performance reports on a HUD-9902 form. Please visit the CMS Requirement Guidance page for information on the submission requirements related to the form.

Grant awardees must also enter their HUD Client Projections in HCS. Refer to the 9902 Projection Training Guide for instructions on how to complete projections.

The Launchpad CMS will stop providing support and maintenance after November 1, 2021. Launchpad has not and will not modify its database to support the new 9902 report. Therefore, all agencies will stop using and entering data in Launchpad on October 1, 2021. Agencies can use Launchpad to complete inputting their client data for FY 2021 and have until the end of October 2021 to submit their 4th Quarter FY 2021 9902 report and client data to HUD. Launchpad users do not have until the end of December 2021 to submit their final 4th Quarter FY 2021 data like normal. All agencies still using Launchpad must select an alternative CMS and have it in place no later than October 1, 2021 to start collecting required data for FY 2022.

Password Resets and Technical Support

Password Resets

For password reset requests, email Housing.Counseling@hud.gov using the subject “HCS Password Reset.” Please also include the following information:

  • Your request for password reset
  • Your name
  • Your Housing Counseling System (HCS) user ID
  • HCS housing counseling agency identification number
  • Your agency’s name

The FHA Resource Center will reset your password so you can access the HCS application. You will receive an encrypted email from the FHA Resource Center with a temporary password within 1-3 business days with a temporary password. If you do not receive the encrypted email with your temporary password in you inbox, check your email system spam, clutter, or junk folders. Wait at least 30 minutes before accessing the system to change your password. If you have any questions, please contact the FHA Resource Center by calling: (800) 225-5342 or email: Housing.Counseling@hud.gov.

Other Technical Support Requests

Please report all technical issues or system errors to the HUD National Help Desk at (888) 297-8689 or (202) 708-3300 and choose option 9.

Tell the Help Desk specialist that you need assistance with application:

HCS (F11) - Housing Counseling System.

Provide the following information:

  • Your name
  • Phone number
  • E-mail address
  • Name of your organization
  • HCS agency ID if applicable
  • Login ID - If you do not have Login ID, or it is not registered with the HUD National Help Desk, they will use "HCS-ARM Customer" as the general contact record
  • Brief description of the issue

Please ensure that the ticket is routed to the "HSGN - HCS - ARM" group.

Help Desk hours are 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET.

Improvement Release

HCS improvement releases summarize the improvements included with each new release of HCS.

Disclosure Statement

This disclosure statement outlines HUD’s legal notice for using the Housing Counseling System.

HCS Disclosure Statement