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Home Sharing Program2021-01-13T12:30:54+00:00

Montgomery County Home Sharing Program: 301-85-SHARE

Housing Initiative Partnership (HIP), a nonprofit housing developer and counseling agency, is launching a Home Sharing Program in Montgomery County, beginning in January 2021. The goal is to successfully identify and match renters who are seeking affordable housing options with homeowners who have attractive and safe spare bedrooms in their homes, or Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) on their property, to rent long-term. The homeowners must live in the home full time to participate.

HIP’s Montgomery County Home Sharing Program is supported by Montgomery County’s Department of Health & Human Services, and uses Silvernest.com to match Homeowners (HO) with compatible Home Seekers (HS). No housing subsidies are available.

Homeowners Survey
Home Seekers Survey
Montgomery County Home Sharing

Survey Questions for Homeowners

1. As a homeowner (HO) what factors would motivate you to rent space in your house?
2. What would prevent you from renting a space in your house? What are your primary concerns?
3. Do you have any concerns about the safety or adequacy of the area you are considering renting? *
5. Would you be open to renting space to more than one individual (HO)? *
If yes, who?
6. What support would you want to see in place before you’d agreed to a home sharing arrangement?
7. Would you consider reducing the rent in exchange for the Home seeker performing extra household duties or errands? *
If Yes, what types of duties and errands would you need help with?
8. What behaviors are simply off the table?
9. Would public health concerns related to Covid-19 prevent you from engaging in Home Sharing? *
10. Do you have access to the internet, either by cell phone or a computer? *

Thanks for completing the HIP survey!

Have additional questions? Would you like for a housing counselor to call you to discuss next steps?

Thank you for completing HIP’s survey for the newly launched Montgomery County Home Sharing Program. You can expect to receive a follow up email or telephone call from Michele Higgs, HIP’s Community Outreach Coordinator, within the next 24 hours to answer any questions you have. She can also be reached directly at 301-857-4273 or mhiggs@HIPhomes.org The goal of the Home Sharing Program is to successfully identify and match renters who are seeking affordable housing options in Montgomery County with homeowners who have an attractive and safe bedroom in their home to rent for more than 6 months. HIP’s focus is to facilitate a compatible match between renters and homeowners. The homeowners must live in the home full time to participate. Thank you for your interest! Take care, HIP Home Sharing Team
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Frequently Asked Questions

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 https://HIPhomes.org/Home-Sharing 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 Silvernest.com. 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.

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