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Rapid re-housing programs

Health Factors: Housing & Transit
Decision Makers: Community Development Professionals Community Members Local Government State Government Federal Government Nonprofit Leaders
Evidence Rating: Some Evidence
Population Reach: 1-9% of WI's population
Impact on Disparities: Likely to decrease disparities

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Description

Rapid re-housing programs provide support services to move families or individuals experiencing homelessness into permanent housing, usually within 30 days. Support services vary; core components often include help finding permanent housing, case management, social services, and short-term financial assistance for move-in costs and rent. Program staff may also assist with landlord negotiations. Assistance typically lasts 4-6 months, but may extend up to 18 months. Rapid re-housing programs are available to anyone experiencing homelessness, and often serve military veterans and their families, but may not be appropriate for individuals who are chronically homeless or need permanent supportive housing. Individuals typically connect with rapid re-housing programs through emergency shelters, food pantries, and other social service programs (NAEH-RR 2016, US ICH-RR, US HUD-RR).

Expected Beneficial Outcomes

Reduced homelessness
Improved access to social services
Improved housing stability
Increased food security
Improved health outcomes
Improved mental health
Increased income

Evidence of Effectiveness

There is some evidence that rapid re-housing programs decrease the length of time individuals and families remain homeless and increase access to social services (Davis 2012, Byrne 2016, US ICH-RR). Rapid re-housing programs may also increase housing stability, particularly for families who are newly homeless (US HUD-Gubits 2015, Davis 2012). However, additional evidence is needed to confirm effects.

Rapid re-housing efforts can decrease rates of homelessness (US ICH-RR, Urban-Cunningham 2015) and can increase shelter turnover rates, enabling shelters to assist more people (US ICH-RR, US HUD-Gubits 2015). Evaluations of programs that serve military veterans and their families indicate approximately 75% of participants have permanent housing without assistance after exiting rapid re-housing programs, a greater portion than other programs achieve (NAEH-SSVF-RURR, US HUD-Cunningham 2015a); other family-focused rapid re-housing programs yield similar results (Davis 2012). Only a small portion of rapid re-housing participants return to homelessness after program completion (Urban-Cunningham 2015, Byrne 2016). Program participation may lead to increased family income, food security, and improved mental and physical health (US HUD-Gubits 2015).

Program evaluations suggest three core components of successful rapid re-housing programs: housing identification, often in partnership with landlords; rent and move-in assistance; and case management and services that connect with other providers (Davis 2012, Urban-Cunningham 2015, US HUD-RR). Partnerships between shelters, agencies, funding organizations, and landlords can increase efficiency of implementation and reduce redundancy in procedures (Davis 2012, Sloan 2015).

Requirements to secure housing and employment in a short time period and to regularly recertify can be barriers to participation in rapid re-housing programs. After leaving the program, some families may have difficulty paying their full rent without subsidies (Urban-Cunningham 2015, Davis 2012, Fisher 2014).

Rapid re-housing programs are more cost-effective than transitional housing programs and shelters (US HUD-RR, US HUD-Gubits 2015). Program costs differ based on local rental rates (Urban-Cunningham 2015); financial support to cover move-in costs such as first and last month’s rent, security deposits, and utility payments are the largest program costs (US ICH-RR, Davis 2012).

Implementation

United States

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development provided $1.5 billion in funding for the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HPRP) through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (US HUD-ARRA 2009). These funds are allocated to rapid re-housing programs in all 50 states to assist households with the greatest need of short-term assistance by providing “just enough” financial assistance, housing search support, and other specific services (US HUD-RR).

Rapid re-housing programs can operate at the state, county, or municipality level, as in Connecticut (CT CEH-CT RRP); Hennepin County, MN (NAEH-RR 2014, Hennepin County-Homelessness, Pew-Henderson 2015); and Salt Lake City, UT (Pew-Henderson 2015). Non-profit organizations can also provide rapid re-housing services, for example, Journey Home in Greater Hartford, CT (Journey Home).

Rapid re-housing programs can be a collaborative effort between non-profits and social service agencies. The National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH), and the Road Home Dane County are two examples of such collaborative efforts (RHDC-RR).

The VA’s Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program is one rapid re-housing program that serves veterans. The program provides grants to organizations which place veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness and their families in stable, permanent housing and provide services to help them maintain stable housing (VA-SSVF, Sturtevant 2015, NAEH-SSVF). The Mayors Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness, a partnership between the US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD), uses concepts from rapid re-housing, Housing First, and permanent supportive housing with added mental health services to serve homeless veterans (RWJF-Veteran homelessness 2014).

Wisconsin

The Road Home Dane County partners with three homeless family shelters on a rapid re-housing program. Funded by the United Way of Dane County, Wisconsin, the program annually provides housing assistance including security deposit and first month’s rent, a subsidy for 30% of market rent for 11 months, and one year of case management services (RHDC-RR).

Implementation Resources

Beyond Shelter-RR - Beyond Shelter. Working with landlords in Housing First/rapid re-housing: Strategies for providers to interact with landlords, address housing barriers, tips for tenants, how to maintain good relationship with landlords. Accessed on August 4, 2016
De Jong 2012 - De Jong, I. Essential elements of successful housing first and rapid re-housing programs-part 1. 2012. Accessed on August 4, 2016
Journey Home - Journey Home. Journey Home works in the Greater Hartford region: Innovative solutions to end homelessness. Accessed on August 4, 2016
NAEH-RR 2009 - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Rapid re-housing (RR): Creating programs that work. 2009. Accessed on August 7, 2016
NAEH-RR 2016 - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Rapid re-housing performance benchmarks and program standards. 2016. Accessed on August 2, 2016
NAEH-SSVF - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) fiscal year 2014 annual report. Accessed on August 5, 2016
Phillips 2010a - Philips SW. Rapid rehousing: A manual for providers. 2010. Accessed on August 4, 2016
US HUD-HPRP resources - US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD), HUD Exchange. Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-housing Program (HPRP): Resources regarding program requirements, promising practices and stories, FAQs and implementation resources. Accessed on February 23, 2017
US HUD-Mayors Challenge - US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD). Mayors Challenge: Resources to join the challenge, resources specific to mayors and staff, information on the homelessness response and housing system, as well as information for corporate and philanthropic partners. Accessed on March 16, 2017

Citations - Description

NAEH-RR 2016 - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Rapid re-housing performance benchmarks and program standards. 2016. Accessed on August 2, 2016
US HUD-RR - US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD). What is rapid re-housing (RR)? Accessed on February 27, 2017
US ICH-RR - United States Interagency Council on Homelessness. Rapid re-housing (RR). Accessed on February 28, 2017

Citations - Evidence

Byrne 2016* - Byrne T, Treglia D, Culhane DP, Kuhn J, Kane V. Predictors of homelessness among families and single adults after exit from homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing programs: Evidence from the Department of Veterans Affairs Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program. Housing Policy Debate. 2016;26(1). Accessed on August 5, 2016
Davis 2012 - David TH, Lane TS. Rapid re-housing of families experiencing homelessness in Massachusetts: Maintaining housing stability. Center for Social Policy Publications. Paper 61. 2012. Accessed on August 7, 2016
Fisher 2014 - Fisher BW, Mayberry L, Shinn M, Khadduri J. Leaving homelessness behind: Housing decisions among families exiting shelter. Housing Policy Debate. 2014;24(2):364-386. Accessed on August 4, 2016
NAEH-SSVF-RURR - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Ramping up rapid re-housing (RURR): Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program. 2015. Accessed on August 7, 2016
Sloan 2015 - Sloan MF, Ford KA, Merritt DM. Shifts in practice based on rapid re-housing for rural homelessness: An exploratory study of micropolitan homeless service provision. Contemporary Rural Social Work. 2015;7(2):127-134. Accessed on August 4, 2016
Urban-Cunningham 2015 - Cunningham MK, Gillespie S, Anderson J. Rapid re-housing: What the research says. Washington, DC: Urban Institute; 2015. Accessed on August 4, 2016
US HUD-Cunningham 2015a - Cunningham M, Biess J, Emam D, Burt M, Urban Institute. Veterans homelessness prevention demonstration evaluation: Final report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD), Office of Policy Development and Research; 2015. Accessed on February 23, 2017
US HUD-Gubits 2015 - Gubits D, Shinn M, Bell S, et al. Family Option Study: Short-term impacts of housing and services interventions for homeless families. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD), Office of Policy Development and Research; 2015. Accessed on February 23, 2017
US HUD-RR - US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD). What is rapid re-housing (RR)? Accessed on February 27, 2017
US ICH-RR - United States Interagency Council on Homelessness. Rapid re-housing (RR). Accessed on February 28, 2017

Citations - Implementation

CT CEH-CT RRP - Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness (CT CEH). The state of Connecticut Rapid Re-housing Program (CT RRP). Accessed on August 4, 2016
Hennepin County-Homelessness - Hennepin County, Minnesota. Initiatives for housing and homelessness: Fact sheets about initiatives, Housing First partnership, homelessness prevention assistance, rapid re-housing, continuum of care, and their ten year plan to end homelessness. Accessed on August 4, 2016
Journey Home - Journey Home. Journey Home works in the Greater Hartford region: Innovative solutions to end homelessness. Accessed on August 4, 2016
NAEH - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). About us: The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a nonprofit, non-partisan, organization committed to preventing and ending homelessness in the United States. Accessed on August 7, 2016
NAEH-RR 2014 - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Rapid re-housing (RR): A history and core components. 2014. Accessed on August 7, 2016
NAEH-SSVF - National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH). Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) fiscal year 2014 annual report. Accessed on August 5, 2016
Pew-Henderson 2015 - Henderson T. Attacking homelessness with 'rapid rehousing.' PEW Charitable Trusts. 2015. Accessed on August 4, 2016
RHDC-RR - The Road Home Dane County (RHDC). Rapid Re-housing (RR) program: A collaborative effort between three homeless family shelters: The Salvation Army, The Road Home, and the YWCA-Madison. Accessed on August 7, 2016
RWJF-Veteran homelessness 2014 - Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). RWJF Culture of Health blog: Ending veterans' homelessness by next year, including information about the Mayors Challenge and additional programs to end veteran homelessness. 2014. Accessed on August 4, 2016
Sturtevant 2015 - Sturtevant L, Brennan M, Viveiros J, Handelman E. Housing and services needs of our changing veteran population. Washington, DC: National Housing Conference and Center for Housing Policy; 2015. Accessed on August 12, 2016
US HUD-ARRA 2009 - US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD). American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009. Accessed on February 23, 2017
US HUD-RR - US Department of Housing and Urban Development (US HUD). What is rapid re-housing (RR)? Accessed on February 27, 2017
VA-SSVF - US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Homeless veterans. Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program. Accessed on August 2, 2016

Page Last Updated

August 5, 2016

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