Job Summary: The Housing Coordinator is responsible for assisting individuals and families accepted into the agency’s permanent supporting housing programs with the move-in process including housing search process and placement into affordable rental properties, securing and coordinating household furnishings. This position will perform ongoing tenant education, collect monthly occupancy fees, handle evictions and the move-out process. This position is also responsible for performing new housing inspections, environmental reviews as necessary, maintaining relationships with private landlords, communicating with landlords on apartment maintenance issues and marketing and securing new landlords and property management companies for the program. The Housing Coordinator will also serve as principal contact with our housing partners regarding administrative matters, maintaining all lease schedules, and the renewal lease process.
Establishing positive relationships with participants in assessing their housing needs.
Conduct housing history/background assessments with participants including criminal background and credit report checks if required by landlords.
Preparing participants to conduct their own housing search, apply for apartments, and negotiate with potential landlords; accompanying participants and/or transporting participants to apartment viewings as needed.
Providing participants with listings of potential housing options in alignment with participants’ housing needs and geographic preferences.
Assess housing affordability rate for participants based on their income, HUD guidelines, and participant income potential.
Explain and review the lease and sublease agreement with the incoming participant(s)/sub-tenant..
Coordinate the donation and distribution of furniture for participants, including purchasing new items as warranted.
Educate participants about their responsibilities as tenants and assist with troubleshooting problems as they arise, including advocacy assistance with landlords when warranted.
Guide the leasing process between participant and landlord acting as an advocate and on behalf of the participant.
Complete rent calculation for all clients prior to participant executing the lease.
Collect monthly occupancy fees (30% of gross income) from participants.
Conduct follow-up with participants/sub-tenants and landlords after housing placement; assist case management staff in mediating any landlord-sub-tenant issues that may arise.
Work to prevent eviction of tenants including negotiating moving clients before eviction procedure and oversee the move of tenants who are unable to stay in their current apartment.
Connect with landlords via neighborhood outreach, internet search, and networking events.
Build and maintain positive relationships with private landlords and other housing providers to expand Housing Forward’s landlord portfolio;
Advocate with landlords for participants with rental barriers such as prior evictions, poor credit, and criminal history;
Conduct rent reasonableness assessments and completing environmental reviews on buildings where units are located.
Conduct apartment inspections and working with landlords to correct any deficiencies.
Explain and review with potential landlords/property management companies the lease and sublease agreement.
Coordinate the signing of the lease and sublease agreement and supporting landlords in providing all other necessary paperwork to participate in Housing Forward supportive housing programs.
Educate landlords about Housing Forward’s role in supporting sub-tenants, including rental assistance and supportive services.
Create and maintain a housing resource database containing available market-rate and affordable housing buildings/programs.
Work with Housing Navigator to ensure that clients, especially those that ineligible for Housing Forward’s supportive housing programs have appropriate resources for referrals. Ensure proper coordination of housing services for Housing Forward clients.
Maintain accurate participant/tenant files;
Document and retain copies of all communications with landlords and sub-tenants;
Work closely with the client’s assigned case manager to ensure that housing placement is consistent with overall service plan. Maintain regular professional contacts with both internal and external case managers to stay abreast of any changes in client service plans and to inform case managers of any changes in housing status and or current issues.
Maintain security deposit and leasing schedule for all supportive housing units; including units manage by our partners. Communicate with appropriate external in a timely manner renewals dates of leases and collect documents within the appropriate timeline to ensure a smooth renewals
Receive monthly rent schedules from housing partners and submit those schedules along with HF schedules to the agency’s bookkeeper 5 working days prior to the end of the month;
Attend weekly staff meetings and case review meetings;
Participate in meeting with housing partners as indicated.
Participate in on- and off-site staff trainings, workshops and outreach events as needed;
Work in a team approach to deliver existing programs and to develop new programs;
Participate in Housing Forward sponsored events;
Perform other duties as needed.
Hours: 9:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. Must be willing to work occasional evenings or weekends
Employee Status – Full-time equivalent 37.5 hours per week
Knowledge, Skills and Experience:
Excellent case management skills, ability to work independently and as part of a team. Demonstrates experience and ability to interact sensitively and respectfully with persons with severe disabilities (mental health, substance abuse or other disability condition) and homeless difficulties. Demonstrates strong skills in interviewing, engagement, assessment, planning and advocacy. Demonstrates common sense, good judgment, and ability to work independently.
Demonstrated desire and ability to work with individuals and families that are disabled and homeless providing appropriate support, motivation and compassion in accordance with Housing Forward mission and philosophy of service.
Ideal candidate will have at least two year of experience working with homeless populations or working with issues of homelessness, affordable housing, and/or housing discrimination.
Bilingual preferred (Spanish and English).
Working knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite.
Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
Desire, creativity, and flexibility to work in a new and fast growing agency.
Willingness to work flexible hours as needed and have impeccable attendance.
Must have a car and valid driver’s license.
Ability to handle various projects concurrently.
Ability to lift and/or move 50 lbs.
Qualifications: Bachelor degree, Master’s degree preferred, in social work, counseling, or related field or at least two year of prior supportive housing related services.
About Housing Forward
The mission of Housing Forward is to transition people from housing crisis to housing stability. Housing Forward is the only social service agency in west Cook County with a comprehensive "housing + services" solution for transitioning individuals and families out of homelessness. Over the past 22 years, we have developed a unique, integrated approach that to date has transformed the lives of more than 10,000 people. Our solution is comprehensive and long-term, not just a quick fix, which benefits our clients and also the communities in which we operate.