Housing SolutionsBest Practices for Providing Housing Information to Clients AIRS Conference – Rochester, NY May 25, 2010
What are the most common housing requests you hear? Different types of housing Credit/criminal record issues Housing with no income Barriers? Call time limits Quality of available resources
How do you find housing for your clients?Where do you keep it? Paper/spreadsheet Program referrals Online Pay services Personal contacts
How do you convey listings to callers? By phone Referral to online listing service Through program referrals
Pros/cons of your housing location system? Accurate and reliable? Up to date? Easy to access? Free?
Wishlist What’s missing in your housing location system? What would be ideal? With your group, create a wishlist.
Online housing locators Unmanaged • Little or no human interaction • Listings can be repeated, out of date • Often sorted by pay features, not consumer need • Searchers may enter personal information for results (anonymity, Fair Housing compromised)
Online housing locators Managed • Human interaction • Up-to-date listings • Easy to access
Case Study 1 – Cuyahoga CoCross marketing and completed calls • Many options: - Conduct housing searches - Send callers to website - Refer callers via direct transfer to the Socialserve.com call center
Case Study 1 – Cuyahoga CoCross marketing and completed calls • ADA compliant website • Free, regular training for I&R staff as new staff members come on • Laminated desk guides
Case Study 2 – GeorgiaHelping special-needs callers • Housing listings highlight a large range of accessibility features • Special-needs I&R representatives can complete confidentiality training to use Special Needs Housing Search
Case Study 2 – GeorgiaHelping special-needs callers • The Special Needs Housing Search... - Is confidential and secure - Encourages collaboration between tenant, landlord and caseworker
“As the federal government continues to roll out housing vouchers for veterans experiencing homelessness, my organization has utilized GeorgiaHousingSearch.org to make the affordable housing connection for many of our soldiers. Apartment complexes like Chatsworth Apartment Homes in Atlanta, and Creekside Apartments in Decatur, have provided safe affordable housing options for these veterans. Both of these addresses were selected amongst the hundreds of database units promoted by landlords with a particular sensitivity towards veterans.” Jimiyu Evans, Housing Advocate, Project Community Connections, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia
Three family members with four children between them recently fled South Carolina to escape domestic violence. They secured jobs in Atlanta and approached our housing placement organization to request assistance in finding a house they could rent by pooling their resources. Utilizing Special Needs Housing Search access on GeorgiaHousingSearch.org, we were able to advocate with a landlord sensitive to the plight of this family and willing to negotiate a fair rent for this family to afford. Housing placement organization dedicated to assisting individuals and families experiencing homelessness, Atlanta, Georgia
Case Study 3 – New Jersey • 4 years ago, rolled out NJHousing.govfree trainings for 2-1-1 and cross marketing • Today, nearly 4,000 landlords, 50,000 units • A way to address complicated requests during short call times
Case Study 3 – New Jersey “I have been usingNJHousing.gov to look for housing opportunities for people with disabilities in New Jersey. I have always been able to find many housing options on this site. There is a lot of information about each property, allowing us to know if the person should pursue a particular place or if it is not suitable. I recommend this site to anyone who needs to find a place to live.” Deb Flanagan-Support Coordinator Specialist, New Jersey