Teamwork is at the heart of everything we do at ShelterCare. It takes many people working together to help our neighbors in need of safe, stable housing. It takes caring donors and funders. It takes a dedicated staff. It takes a variety of community collaborations with other social service agencies and health care providers. Another group that might not be top of mind, yet plays a pivotal role in housing vulnerable community members, is property managers.
ShelterCare has a variety of housing solutions to help our clients stabilize their lives, including apartments that we own or manage as well as privately managed apartments in the community. Providing a mix of housing options allows us to best fit the individual needs of our clients. Some clients might thrive in a ShelterCare-owned facility surrounded by people going through a similar experience, while others want to be more independent.
Apartments in the community, known as “scattered site” housing, are another option that can help clients re-engage with the community. ShelterCare has nearly 70 clients in scattered site apartments.
Our housing team and case managers work to build positive relationships with property managers in order to better assist clients who want to live in apartments in the community. We currently work with nine property management companies in the Eugene-Springfield area. Partnering with property managers creates a win-win for both sides. Property Manager Tim Danforth explains. “I get the satisfaction of helping an otherwise disenfranchised person get into safe housing, and I know that I will get rent on time, with regular inspections from ShelterCare to help me keep the units in good shape.”
Many of our clients are working on rebuilding or establishing a rental history and might not be the most desirable rental candidates on paper. Our team has many tools to make the process positive for both parties. For example, ShelterCare can co-sign leases or sign master lease agreements, which can help clients with poor or no rental history.
Clients in ShelterCare’s Supported Housing program may receive financial assistance for deposits and other move-in costs, and then we work with clients to ensure their rent is paid on time. In addition, every client has a case manager who provides guidance and coaching on how to be a good tenant. ShelterCare conducts regular inspections of rental units and has an experienced team of maintenance professionals to help with household repairs.
Our community is facing a shortage of affordable housing. In February, KMTR reported that for every 100 families with low income, there are only 16 affordable units available. We are so grateful that caring property managers have stepped up to the plate by partnering together to find housing solutions for our community’s most vulnerable populations. Local landlord Margaret Lara with Sunshine Property Group shares, “The problems facing the homeless population in our area can feel overwhelming, and it can be hard to imagine what a single person or business can do to make an impact. Partnering with ShelterCare and providing a unit of housing for their participants allows us to be part of the solution, while knowing that our tenant has a support system in place to help ensure their success.”
If you would like to learn more about partnering with ShelterCare please contact Teresa Sanchez, director of property management.