What is Rapid Re-Housing?
Rapid Re-Housing is a financial assistance program aimed at preventing individuals and families from becoming homeless and helping those who are experiencing homelessness to be quickly re-housed and stabilized. Rapid Re-Housing is a Housing First strategy – a process whereby a housing crisis is addressed immediately, without waiting for or requiring that clients resolve any other issues. This is practical – people are in a better position to address complicated or chronic problems when they are safely housed.
Rapid Re-Housing is funded in the Thomas Jefferson Planning District area through the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). Rapid Re-Housing assists with rental / utility deposits and rental subsidies paid directly to property managers through service provider grantees. Plus, Rapid Re-Housing can provide support services designed to assist risky renters to be stable tenants. Supportive Services can include coaching in finance management, neighbor relations, goal setting, boundary setting and navigating the complex variables that come along with housing.
Area agencies receiving these funds and/or working with rapid-re-housing clients include Equity, The Haven, PACEM, Salvation Army, Shelter for Help in Emergency, City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County Schools, and the Thomas Jefferson Area Coalition for the Homeless, among others.
What are the Benefits for Recipients, Property Managers, & the Community?
ü Security deposits. Many people can afford the monthly rent, but some have difficulty saving enough money for their security deposit. As a result, Rapid Re-Housing can help clients with this one-time payment.
ü Access to subsidies. Eligible individuals receive a subsidy to help them cover the first three months of their rent. This allows clients time to stabilize and build an emergency fund for the future.
ü Ongoing assistance. Individuals who continue to have financial issues receive financial assistance based on their income and savings. Re-evaluation occurs quarterly up to 24 months.
ü Support Services. Case management and other support services are available for as long as financial assistance is needed. With support, people can correct past mistakes and prevent future problems. Through the network of service provider partners, individuals and families have access to an array of services that lead to self-sufficiency and success.
ü Conflict Mediation. Supportive services extend to mediation between tenant and property manger when lease violations occur. Mediation services are neutral and can ensure that conflict is resolved quickly and impartially. When a violation does occur, property managers can contact a service provider who will in turn inform and work with the tenant to make better choices and avoid lease violations.
ü Helping Helps. Safe, affordable housing is a universal need regardless of past choices. Approving a lease for an individual or family enrolled in Rapid Re-Housing is an integral part of helping people take charge of their lives and making the community a better place.
Who is eligible for rapid re-housing & how is eligibility determined?
Rapid re-housing is available to individuals and families experiencing homelessness, defined by the Department of Housing and Community Development as follows:
* individuals and families who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence including those residing in a shelter or place not meant for human habitation and those exiting and institution where they resided temporarily
* individuals and families who will imminently lose their primary nighttime residence
* individuals and families who are fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence
How can I access Rapid Re-Housing Funds?
If you are working with a client you believe is eligible for rapid re-housing, please complete a Coordinated Assessment Packet for them and request a place on the Community Case Review agenda so that your client can be considered for available funds.