The screening process begins when a person who wants to live at a HomesNOW location fills out an application. This is done through our website (homesnow.org), or by turning in a paper form available at any HomesNOW location.
After an application is turned in, HomesNOW will review it. This includes a basic background check and sending the applicant’s ID to the Bellingham Police Department to check for active warrants. If an active warrant is found, it does not disqualify the applicant from potential residency, however they must quash their warrant before being allowed to live at a HomesNOW location. A criminal record does not disqualify an applicant from being eligible, however recommendations by identified referral agencies programs, Such as social services, mental health, law enforcement, etc. may be used in part or in full to determine eligibility. Recommendations from referral agencies are based on objective criteria.
Once an applicant has been approved after this process, and if there’s an opening at a HomesNOW location, the applicant will be interviewed and the basic requirements, protocols and expectations of living at the location will be explained.
These requirements and expectations include:
1. Participating in regular household chores.
2. Following basic house rules (EX: Unity Village – Simplified Handbook)
3. Applicant actively seeking housing.
4. Participating in weekly meetings (reasonable accommodations are made for scheduling conflicts such as job or health appointment).
HomesNOW adheres to fair housing practices and prohibits residents, staff and volunteers from discrimination on the basis of race, religion, national origin, gender, disability, or any other protected class during any part of the screening and intake process and while living at a HomesNOW location.
HomesNOW locations are intended to provide a safe and stable place for homeless individuals to live while they actively seek permanent housing.
This includes shared areas/resources for:
4. Internet Access
6. Basic furnishings (such as bed/desk/etc.)
While at any HomesNOW location, regular donations of needed items such as clothing, food, bus passes and hygiene supplies typically come in on a regular basis, however donations are not guaranteed, distribution is based on supply available. Any potential resident will be responsible for their own meals, supply needs and transportation.
HomesNOW will make reasonable accommodations for individuals with a disability. (EX: Building a ramp, adding bathroom grab bars, lowering closet rods)
Some disabled individuals use care caregivers or other outside services. While the need for any outside services does not disqualify any potential resident from living at a HomesNOW location, we are however, not able to provide these services as HomesNOW.