Property management refers to the set of functions involved with receiving and processing tenant rental applications, receiving rent payments, and ensuring the ongoing physical upkeep of the housing. In projects that include ongoing ownership of units or a long-term master lease arrangement, property management staff is typically part of the supportive housing team.

Housing management refers to the set of services concerned with connecting tenants to housing in the private rental market, making rental payments for units that the organization may lease directly from a landlord, and in some cases, receiving tenant rent payments. Such staff often serves as an ongoing landlord liaison and has a distinct role from a service provider. Housing management staff is typically found in organizations in which the tenants or the organization directly lease the units associated with the project from the existing rental market.

Quality property and housing management in a supportive housing project is:

  • Tenant-Centered: Staff educates tenants on their rights and responsibilities as leaseholders, actively soliciting tenant feedback.
  • Accessible: Tenants move into housing quickly, and the process accommodates their varying backgrounds and cultural needs.
  • Coordinated: Staff works closely with service providers and landlords to ensure tenants sustain stable housing.
  • Integrated: All tenants are offered a choice of housing unit and have a lease identical to tenants not in supportive housing.
  • Sustainable: While respecting tenant rights and privacy, staff regularly checks to ensure that the unit remains in good condition and receives any needed maintenance.

In most cases, the information provided in this section of the toolkit applies to all models of supportive housing, including those in which tenants are scattered in housing units located throughout the community and those in which multiple supportive housing units are located in the same building. In cases in which the supportive housing project does not have a direct day-to-day responsibility for property management, it is still important for housing management staff to understand quality in these areas, in order to ensure tenants are living in well-managed units.

Select from the links below to access additional resources to support your organization in planning and operating a quality supportive housing project.

Understanding Property and Housing Management

Coordinating Property/Housing Management and Supportive Services

Quickly Housing Tenants Using the Housing First Model

Cultural Competency in the Application Process

Building and Maintaining Relationships with Landlords

Housing Unit Choice

Leases and Tenant Education

Housing Inspection, Move-In and Maintenance

Key Policies and Procedures for Property and Housing Management

Asset Management

Go to the Quality Toolkit Table of Contents.


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