Montgomery County Home Sharing

Montgomery County Home Sharing2024-03-11T21:28:26+00:00

What is home sharing?

Home Sharing with HIP is an innovative idea where homeowners offer spare rooms or Accessory Dwelling Units in their home for rent to home seekers searching for affordable, healthy and safe housing. Home sharing can reduce social isolation, create monthly income for homeowners, and offer new affordable housing options for home seekers.

HIP’s counselors and outreach staff will help advise clients through this process, from start to finish, free of charge.

Montgomery County Home Sharing Program

HIP’s Home Sharing Program is supported by Montgomery County’s Department of Health & Human Services. We require background checks, credit checks, and help the homeowners prepare their lease and home sharing agreements with the home seekers.  No rental subsidies are offered by the county as part of this program.

Benefits of Home Sharing

How We Help

HIP’s certified housing counselors can help homeowners and home seekers:

  • identify their personal preferences;
  • navigate the online matching platform, create a compelling profile and add photos;
  • carefully assess potential matches to identify compatible housemates; and
  • finalize an appropriate home sharing agreement.

Our goal is to increase the likelihood of a successful long-term match through a thoughtful consideration of participants’ preferences, needs, rights and responsibilities. We vet both the homeowner and housemate to ensure peace of mind for both parties. Our services are free of charge.


Our Process

Register with HIP

Complete our Interest Form below

(If you need assistance or have questions, please contact Michele at 301-85-SHARE or 301-857-4273.)

What is Home Sharing?

When the owner of a home rents a room to another person who is not related. The room can be a bedroom, basement area, or separate structure on the property with a private entrance and kitchen (Accessory Dwelling Unit or ADU).

How is that different from a group house?

Group houses are generally rented by a group of people, and the owner doesn’t live there. In a Home Share, the owner is required to live in the house full time and decides to rent a spare room to someone.

Why do homeowners decide to share their home with a renter?

There are a variety of reasons. Some homeowners are empty nesters or retired and have a spare bedroom to rent, to help them stretch their finances. Others would like to have another person in the house for companionship, or in case of an emergency. Still others would simply like to be help to someone who needs an affordable place to stay in exchange for a mutually comfortable arrangement.

What is the Montgomery County Home Sharing Program?

An effort by Housing Initiative Partnership, a nonprofit organization, and its partner, Montgomery County’s Dept. of Health & Human Services, to create new opportunities for a broader pool of residents to rent affordably, while generating additional income for older homeowners who have a spare room. HIP’s certified housing counselors will help homeowners and home seekers identify a compatible match using the Silvernest online platform.

Who is eligible to participate in the program?

County residents who own a home with a spare bedroom or another space are eligible if they occupy the home full-time. Renters who are looking of an affordable option with a long-term lease in Montgomery County. Home seekers who live in Montgomery County and in neighboring jurisdictions are eligible.

Does the County provide a rent rebate to people who rent through this program?

No. The County is not offering any rental subsidies as part of this program.

However, some older homeowners have found that household chores such as dog walking, laundry, vacuuming, or grocery shopping, etc. have become more difficult and may be willing to negotiate a lower the rent in return for help with these previously agreed upon chores.

How can I participate?

Call 301-85-Share (301-85-74273) or go online to and complete an Interest Form. An experienced HIP outreach coordinator will explain the program, ask a few questions about your preferences, set up an appointment with a certified housing counselor to create your profile on Participants are notified if there is a possible match, and the housing counselor will then help set up and facilitate a virtual meeting.

How do I know if the person I might share a house with is trustworthy?

All home seekers will be required to pass a credit check and criminal background check as part of their registration on the Silvernest portal. HIP’s counselors will provide additional guidance.

What about health concerns during the pandemic? Can I ask if the homeowner or homeseeker has been tested for Covid?

Because health information is private, HIP does not collect such information. At their meeting, the participants will be able to discuss the ways they have protected their health thus far, and what constitutes a level of comfort for each of them.

What if problems arise?2020-11-18T12:45:32+00:00

The HIP housing counselor will call each match after a month, to see how things are going. If there are some rough spots, the counselor will work with the two parties to resolve the issue. If it seems more serious, the counselor will refer the parties to local mediation resources or to Silvernest’s legal support services.


Michele Higgs
Michele Higgs
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