• HUD Guidance

Point-in-Time Count Methodology Guide


Date Published: March 2015


This guide provides Continuums of Care (CoCs) with standards and guidance concerning acceptable methodologies and approaches to conducting Point-in-Time (PIT) counts of homeless people. The audience for this guide is CoC stakeholders involved in planning and executing the PIT count. This includes the CoC collaborative applicant, HMIS lead, Consolidated Plan (Con Plan) jurisdictions, and other CoC members and local stakeholders involved in planning and executing the PIT count. The guide will be useful in determining a process for collecting high-quality data on the number and characteristics of sheltered and unsheltered homeless people in your community. HUD recommends that CoCs regularly review and refer to this guide to answer questions about PIT count preparation, implementation, and analysis. 

This guide replaces the Guide to Counting Sheltered Homeless People and the Guide to Counting Unsheltered Homeless People. CoCs should reference the Point-in-Time Count Methodology Guide to determine HUD’s current PIT count standards, and they should also reference HUD’s most recent Notice for Housing Inventory Count (HIC) and Point-in-Time (PIT) Data Collection for Continuum of Care (CoC) Program and the Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) Program to learn the PIT count requirements for the upcoming PIT count.

In June 2018, HUD released a PIT count eLearning module that goes through the PIT Count Methodology Guide and provides information on the basics of the PIT count. HUD recommends communities review this material.

To view all available PIT resources, visit the PIT and HIC Guides, Tools, and Webinars page.

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