Homeward Bound TBRA
Asheville Regional HOME Consortium
The Homeward Bound Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (TBRA) program is ending homelessness in Asheville, NC by providing housing opportunities for people who have been chronically homeless in the community. Using a Housing First model, vulnerable people are moved directly into apartments of their own with HOME funds, providing the security deposits and ongoing rental assistance. HOME TBRA households also receive housing case management from Homeward Bound staff, with a focus on stabilization and maintaining housing long-term. During the two years of HOME subsidy, households are supported by case managers in either developing income to pay their own rent long-term or accessing other long-term supports. This use of HOME funds is a critical component of the community’s overall strategy to end homelessness with permanent housing.
The Homeward Bound TBRA program works across Asheville and Buncombe County, partnering with private landlords to create housing opportunities for chronically homeless people. The housing market in the community is very tight, so program staff work diligently and creatively to identify and recruit landlords with affordable units.
Housing costs in the community have made it increasingly difficult for people experiencing homelessness to return to housing without assistance. In particular, the chronically homeless population struggles to exit homelessness, which causes the number of identified chronically homeless people to grow. The Homeward Bound TBRA program has created a new avenue for people to move out of chronic homelessness and into permanent housing of their own, which is a win for the households served and the community as a whole.
The Homeward Bound TBRA program’s beneficiaries are people who have been chronically homeless in the Asheville community. These beneficiaries have been literally homeless at least 12 months and have a disability. Beneficiaries have significant medical and behavioral health care needs and are prioritized by acuity using an evidence-based assessment tool. In addition to having little to no income they also have the greatest number of barriers, such as extensive criminal justice involvement and accessing the housing they need to end their homelessness.
The HOME TBRA program is operated by Homeward Bound, a local nonprofit providing homeless services since 1988 and permanent housing since 2006. To implement HOME TBRA, Homeward Bound partners with the Housing Authority of the City of Asheville as well as many private landlords across the community. Additionally, Homeward Bound participates in the community’s coordinated entry process to identify households most in need of this important resource.
|LIHTC (if applicable)||N/A|
|Other Federal Funds||N/A|
|Other Public Funds||$81,000|
|Total Project Costs||$136,000|
The project pairs Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Housing Services funds, which provide housing placement and case management staffing, with HOME TBRA.
Participating Jurisdiction: Asheville Regional HOME Consortium
Project: Homeward Bound TBRA
Location: Asheville, NC
Program Type: Tenant-Based Rental Assistance
Beneficiaries: Chronically homeless
Number of Households Served: 26 (as of March 2020)
The Homeward Bound TBRA program is ending chronic homelessness for the community’s most vulnerable members.
Words of Advice
Be willing to use resources like HOME to serve higher-needs populations. Ending homelessness is possible but requires strategic investments of funds like HOME.