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Housing Resources

2012 Advocates' Guide to Housing and Community Development Policy

Compiled by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), the Advocates' Guide to Housing and Community Development Policy is a valuable resource that includes articles with information about housing, community development, and federally sponsored programs, as well as appendices with a glossary of terms and titles including "How Laws Are Made” and “Lobbying and Advocacy Tips.”

Accounting & Financial Operations for Nonprofits in Rural Housing

The purpose of this manual is to convey, in terms that are as straightforward as possible, the basic information necessary to manage the accounting and financial areas of the organization. Although information is included concerning the actual processing of transactions and reconciling of accounts, this manual is not intended to provide detailed bookkeeping instruction, but rather to provide an overview of the critical accounting and financial areas for which nonprofits are responsible.

Bibliography of Cushing N. Dolbeare's writings

Compiled by the National Low Income Housing Coalition, this extensive bibliography lists the works of Cushing N. Dolbeare, founder and chair emeritus of NLIHC and one of the nation’s leading experts on federal housing policy and the housing circumstances of low-income people.

The Center for Housing and New Community Economics (CHANCE)
Institute on Disability/UCE
University of New Hampshire
10 West Edge Drive, Suite 101
Durham, NH 03824-3522
Contact: 603-862-4320,

The Center for Housing and New Community Economics (CHANCE) was established in March of 2001. CHANCE’s mission is to improve and increase access to integrated, affordable, and accessible housing coordinated with, but separate from, personal assistance and supportive services.

Changing Priorities: The Federal Budget and Housing Assistance 1976–2005

Changing Priorities provides a history of funding for housing assistance. This report also compares the funding of housing assistance to the broader budget, to housing-related tax benefits that primarily favor homeownership, and to other programs serving low income people. In addition, the funding levels for specific housing programs are shown over time.

Continua of Care Best Practices: Comprehensive Homeless Planning in Rural America

This best practices report provides case studies of rural communities that have successfully created and maintained rural systems and homeless shelter and service projects. The case studies provide rural communities and local groups with examples of how to create a comprehensive plan, prepare an application, and develop sustaining networks of collaboration.

The Continuum of Care Plan and The Ten Year Plan to End Chronic Homelessness: Potential Tools in the Affordable Housing Preservation Toolbox

This Toolbox guide presents a sketch of the Continuum of Care Plan and the process for creating it. The guide is not meant to be a comprehensive introduction to the Continuum of Care; rather, its focus is on potential ties to preserving the stock of federally-assisted affordable permanent housing serving homeless people.

The Corporation for Supportive Housing
50 Broadway, 17th Floor
New York, NY 10004
Contact: 212-986-2966

CSH brings together people, skills and resources. They advance their mission by providing high-quality advice and development expertise, by making loans and grants to supportive housing sponsors, by strengthening the supportive housing industry, and by reforming public policy to make it easier to create and operate supportive housing.

Corporation for Supportive Housing’s Toolkit for Developing and Operating Supportive Housing

The purpose of this Toolkit is to provide organizations with access to tools, informational materials, and sample documents that can help them address key challenges in the planning, development, and on-going operation of permanent supportive housing projects. This Toolkit currently contains more than 150 informational pieces, tools, and sample documents.

Corporation for Supportive Housing’s Toolkit for Ending Long-Term Homelessness

This Toolkit highlights some of the most promising practices for ending long-term homelessness today. In addition to key lessons learned by supportive housing projects and programs across the country, the Toolkit includes profiles of systems-wide strategies for working with this population, photo tours of supportive housing projects from around the country, sample documents from supportive housing service teams and property managers, and a listing of key additional tools.

Council of Large Public Housing Authorities (CLPHA)
455 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Suite 425
Washington, D.C. 20001
Contact: 202-638-1300

The Council of Large Public Housing Authorities is a national nonprofit organization that works to preserve and improve public and affordable housing through advocacy, research, policy analysis and public education. CLPHA’s 60 members represent virtually every major metropolitan area in the country.  The organization's informative publication, Housing Authorities:  Essential Partners in Ending Homelessness, details the successful work of housing authorities nationwide.

Enterprise Community Partners
10227 Wincopin Circle
American City Building
Columbia, MD 21044
Contact: 800-624-4298

Enterprise Community Partners is a leading provider of the development capital and expertise it takes to create decent, affordable homes and rebuild communities. For more than two decades, Enterprise has pioneered neighborhood solutions through public-private partnerships with financial institutions, governments, community organizations and others that share their vision.

Environmental Review: A Guide for Applicants Seeking HUD or USDA Rural Development Financial Assistance

Included in this guide are the steps in an environmental review, a discussion of the various levels of environmental review, factors that are reviewed in the environmental assessment, and an explanation of the developer’s responsibilities.

Fair Housing, the Zoning Process, and Land Use Politics in Rural Areas

Many affordable housing developers encounter opposition from neighbors and elected officials when they propose a new project. This report uses examples from four cases to illustrate choices and strategies that may be employed at different points in a "Not in My Back Yard” (NIMBY) conflict. In each case, local opponents to an affordable housing project used the permit or zoning process to challenge an affordable housing proposal.

Financing Supportive Housing with Tax-Exempt Bonds and 4% Low-Income Housing Tax Credits

Tax-exempt bonds partnered with 4% Low-income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) have been widely used by affordable housing developers. It has taken longer for this financing structure to be used by permanent supportive housing developers since most assume their projects cannot support debt service on the bonds. This report is intended to introduce this technique to local and state officials considering bond financing, presenting several case studies and answering some of the most commonly asked questions.

A Guide to Appealing Rural Housing Service/Rural Development Decisions

This guide is intended to provide an introduction and basic information about the Rural Housing Services (RHS)/Rural Development appeal process. Complete details on the appeal procedure are found in agency regulations. No one should enter into the appeal process without reading the regulations.

A Guide to Federal Housing and Community Development Programs for Small Towns and Rural Areas

This guide is meant to serve as a tool for rural communities to help identify public resources that may be used to meet the housing needs of low-income rural populations.  It was first published by the Housing Assistance Council (HAC) in 1989, and has been updated occasionally to reflect federal program changes.

Guide to Fundraising for Rural Nonprofits: Strategies for Raising Operating Funds

This fundraising guide is intended to help the staffs and boards of nonprofit housing developers in rural communities to review different types of funders, to identify possible sources of administrative or operating support, and to establish effective fundraising strategies. Resources available on the internet will be highlighted throughout.

Housing Assistance Council
1025 Vermont Avenue, NW, Suite 606
Washington, D.C. 20005
Contact: 202-842-8600,

HAC emphasizes local solutions, empowerment of the poor, reduced dependence and self-help strategies. HAC assists in the development of both single- and multi-family homes and promotes homeownership for working low-income rural families through a self-help, “sweat equity” construction method.

How To Be A “Player” in the Continuum of Care: Tools for the Mental Health Community

This guidebook is designed to provide the mental health community with the necessary tools to be active participants in the Continuum of Care process in their community or state. Through participation in the Continuum of Care process, the mental health community can expand and improve housing and supports for people who are homeless and have serious mental illnesses.

Local Initiatives Support Corporation
501 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10018
Contact: 212-455-9800,

The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) provides capital, technical expertise and information to community-based development organizations working for the creation of affordable housing; commercial, industrial and community facilities; businesses; and jobs.

Making it Work: Combating Rural Homelessness

This issue of Rural Voices illustrates some of the innovative ways rural homeless providers are accessing and using resources.

National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials
630 Eye Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
Contact: 877-866-2476,

The National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) is the leading housing and community development advocate for the provision of adequate and affordable housing and strong, viable communities for all Americans – particularly those with low and moderate incomes. Their members administer HUD programs such as Public Housing, Section 8, CDBG and HOME.

The National Alliance to End Homelessness
1518 K Street, NW, Suite 410
Washington, D.C. 20005
Contact: 202-638-1526,

The National Alliance analyzes policy and develops pragmatic, cost-effective policy solutions. They work collaboratively with the public, private and nonprofit sectors to build state and local capacity, leading to stronger programs and policies that help communities achieve their goal of ending homelessness.

National Center on Family Homelessness
181 Wells Avenue
Newton, MA 02459
Contact: 617-964-3834,

The National Center on Family Homelessness (The National Center), founded in 1988, is the only national organization devoted solely to helping homeless families. Their trainings and technical assistance help shelters and providers address the day-to-day realities of the tragedy of homelessness.

National Coalition for the Homeless
2201 P Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20037
Contact: 202-462-4822,

The National Coalition for the Homeless, founded in 1982, is a national network of people who are currently experiencing or who have experienced homelessness, activists and advocates, community-based and faith-based service providers, and others committed to a single mission. That mission, their common bond, is to end homelessness. They are committed to creating the systemic and attitudinal changes necessary to prevent and end homelessness.

The National Housing Conference
1801 K Street, NW, Suite M-100
Washington, D.C. 20006-1301
Contact: 202-466-2121

For more than 75 years, the nonprofit National Housing Conference (NHC) has been the nation’s premier public policy and affordable housing advocacy organization. A membership drawn from every industry segment forms the foundation for NHC's broad, nonpartisan advocacy for national policies and legislation that promote suitable housing in a safe, decent environment.

National Housing Institute
60 S. Fullerton Avenue, #206
Montclair, NJ 07042
Contact: 973-509-1600

The National Housing Institute examines issues causing the crisis in housing and community in America. NHI has performed original research on such topics as saving subsidized housing, homelessness prevention, and creating jobs as a component of affordable housing construction.

National Ingratitude: Study on Deficiencies in Housing Programs for Veterans

First published in the Indiana Law Review in 2005 this article examines the nature and extent of housing assistance provided by the United States government to veterans of its military service. It finds that assistance remarkably limited and inconsistent with our nation's history and rhetoric, providing a sobering corrective for those who wish to believe that public policy in the United States progressively becomes more humane or that national declarations are matched by national performance. The article also considers the reasons and potential cures for these inadequacies and inconsistencies.

The National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty
1411 K Street, NW, Suite 1400
Washington, D.C. 20005
Contact: 202-638-2535

The mission of NLCHP is to prevent and end homelessness by serving as the legal arm of the nationwide movement to end homelessness. To achieve its mission, the organization pursues three main strategies: impact litigation, policy advocacy and public education.

National Housing Law Project
614 Grand Avenue, Suite 320
Oakland, CA 94610
Contact: 510-251-9400,

The National Housing Law Project (NHLP) is a national housing law and advocacy center. The goal of NHLP is to advance housing justice for the poor by increasing and preserving the supply of decent affordable housing, by improving existing housing conditions, including physical conditions and management practices, by expanding and enforcing low-income tenants’ and homeowners’ rights, and by increasing opportunities for racial and ethnic minorities.

National Low Income Housing Coalition
727 15th Street, NW, 6th Floor
Washington, D.C. 20005
Contact: 202-662-1530

The National Low Income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to ending America's affordable housing crisis. While they are concerned about the housing circumstances of all low income people, they focus their advocacy on those with the most serious housing problems, the lowest income households.

National Policy and Advocacy Council on Homelessness
1140 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 1210
Washington, D.C. 20036
Contact: 202-714-5378,

The National Policy and Advocacy Council on Homelessness (NPACH) is a national grassroots organization whose primary concern is to ensure that national homelessness policy accurately reflects the needs of local communities.

National Resource Center on Homelessness and Mental Illness

National Resource Center on Homelessness and Mental Illness provides technical assistance, identifies and synthesizes knowledge, and disseminates information.  The National Resource Center links policy makers, service providers, researchers, consumers, and other interested parties to findings from Federal demonstration and Knowledge Development and Application (KDA) projects and research on homelessness and mental illness.
National Rural Housing Coalition
1331 G Street, NW, 10th Floor
Washington, D.C. 20005
Contact: 202-393-5229,

In 1969, a group of concerned rural community activists, public officials and nonprofit developers formed the National Rural Housing Coalition (NRHC) to fight for better housing and community facilities for low-income rural people.

New Beginnings:  The Need for Supportive Housing for Previously Incarcerated People

Persons exiting the criminal justice system contribute significantly to the growing number of homeless individuals throughout the United States. Supportive housing has proven itself the most cost effective strategy to end homelessness, but the supply of units is extremely limited. This report examines the housing needs of formerly incarcerated people, particularly those with special needs, and presents a national survey of existing models of re-entry housing.

A Nonprofit Capacity Self-Assessment Workbook for Community-Based Housing Organizations

This workbook is intended for use by nonprofit staff and board members to assess their own capacity, set goals for improving their capacity, and to repeat the process on an annual basis. The workbook may also be useful for funders and nonprofit intermediaries that need a tool to assess the capacity-building needs of the nonprofits that they are funding.

Opening Doors

This free newsletter is designed to provide important information on affordable housing issues to people with disabilities, their families, advocates, and service providers across the United States.

Policy Research Associates
345 Delaware Avenue 
Delmar, NY 12054
Contact: 518-439-7415,

PRA's special expertise lies in areas such as the relationship between the mental health and criminal justice systems; the housing, treatment and service needs of homeless people with serious mental illness; issues challenging at-risk children, youth and their families; and the causes and impacts of violence.

Report on Low-Income Veteran Renters

On December 5, 2007, David G. Wood, Director of Financial Markets and Community Investment for the Government Accountability Office, testified before the House Subcommittee on Housing and Community Opportunity about a report on low-income veteran renter households. 

The report, released in August 2007, found that 2.3 million, or 53%, of veteran renter households nationwide were low-income. Half of those households had problems affording rent. The report also found that veterans were somewhat less likely to be low-income or suffer from house affordability problems than non-veteran renter households.

Supportive Housing Training Series
The Supportive Housing Training Series currently includes eleven curricula providing best practices and guidance on supportive housing development, operation and services. Each curriculum provides a one-day training for enriching the skills of supportive housing developers and providers.

Summary Report of the Supportive Housing Leadership Forum 2006: Investing in Change

At the third annual Supportive Housing Leadership Forum, the Corporation for Supportive
Housing (CSH) assembled 200 influential policy makers from 27 states and the District of Columbia along with a cadre of CSH staff to share and advance the policy and program reforms needed to create more supportive housing in their communities.

Rebuilding Lives......From the Streets to a Home and a Job

The stories in Rebuilding Lives are about some of the participants in supportive housing communities, their early experiences, and recent developments in their lives. This document introduces a few people in this effort to end homelessness, and the intention is that readers are intrigued by the results realized through the close collaboration among the partners and in the lives of those served by the project. They are working together to end chronic homelessness through employment and housing.

Regional Housing Forum: A Technical Assistance Guide for Housing Resources and Strategy

Published in 2002, the information and approaches detailed in this guide are intended to provide further information and guidance to Delaware, Florida, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and the District of Columbia as they work collaboratively to develop realistic systems-level strategies to expand housing opportunities for people with disabilities.

Section 8 Made Simple: 2nd Edition

The chapters in this guidebook are organized sequentially to mirror the activities that a person would go through in the Section 8 program – from applying for a voucher, to finding eligible housing, to becoming a successful Section 8 participant. To assist the reader, at the end of each chapter there is a summary of key points.

A Status Report on Hunger and Homelessness in America’s Cities: A 23-City Survey

This report provides an analysis of the scale of the hunger and homelessness problems in a group of American cities and the efforts these cities are making to address those problems. The report is based on data collected from the U.S. Conference of Mayors Hunger and Homelessness Information Questionnaire. Respondents were asked to provide information on emergency food assistance and homeless services provided between October 1, 2008 and September 30, 2009.

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