What is HomeBASE?
HomeBASE is a new housing program for homeless families with children and for pregnant women. It starts on August 1, 2011.
HomeBASE can help pay for rent or other housing costs for up to 3 years. You must follow a Stabilization Plan.
What can HomeBASE pay for?
An apartment for you to stay in while you look for housing (if you have no other safe place to stay) and either
- Up to $4,000 a year to help you move into your own apartment or stay with others or
- A rental subsidy to help you rent a low-cost apartment. You will have to pay 35% of your income for rent and utilities.
What is a Stabilization Plan?
A Stabilization Plan is a plan to help you stay in housing.
You must pay your rent on time and be a good tenant. You may have to go to work or training, save money and keep your children in school.
Before you sign a Stabilization Plan, make sure:
- you understand the plan and
- you can do what is in the plan.
If you do not follow this plan, your family could lose HomeBASE. You may not be able to get any more help for 2 full years.
How can I get HomeBASE?
Apply for Emergency Assistance (EA) with a Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) worker at your DTA (welfare) office.
- have children or be pregnant
- have very little income
- be homeless or about to be homeless in a few days
- have no safe place to stay, and
- meet other EA rules.
Can my family still get emergency shelter if we need it?
If you have no safe place to stay and you appear to be eligible, DHCD must place you in EA shelter or a short-term HomeBASE apartment right away.
If DHCD gives you a safe place to stay through HomeBASE, you will not be able to get EA shelter.
If you are a parent under age 21, DHCD will put you in EA shelter before giving you HomeBASE.
What if DHCD will not give me shelter or the kind of HomeBASE help I need?
Do not refuse a HomeBASE placement. You could lose your chance for other help. But do call for advice:
Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute Created July 2011