Homeless Assistance

Homeless Assistance

Commerce administers several state and federal fund sources that support homeless programs statewide including programs in the Office of Homeless Youth. We also manage the state's Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) to collect data and measure system performance.

The State Homeless Housing and Assistance Act directs this work as do the State Homeless Housing Strategic Plan and the Office of Homeless Youth Plan.

County Report Cards  The Report Cards provide information by county on the HEARTH Homeless System Performance Measures using HUD’s reporting specifications.  Find your county report card here. For detailed information about these measures, refer to HUD’s System Performance Measures Videos:  Length of Time Persons Remain Homeless, The Extent to Which Persons who Exit Homelessness Return to Homelessness, Successful Placement from Street Outreach and Successful Placement in Retention of Permanent Housing

Year to Year Comparison on System Performance Measures  This comparison provides information for calendar years 2015 and 2016 on the HEARTH Homeless System Performance Measures. Counties can compare themselves to like size areas and demographics here.

Raw Data for the Report Card and System Performance Measures can be found here.

Why is Homelessness Increasing?  Homelessness has increased since 2013 in Washington state due to multiple factors, but overwhelmingly because growing rents are pushing people living at the margins into homelessness. Learn more.

Counts of Homelessness: Different Counts and What they Mean  There are a few different ways Washington state counts the number of homeless individuals and families each year. You can learn more with this report.

Overview of the Homeless Housing System and Funding  In every county in Washington, a statewide network of not-for-profit organizations houses more than 98,000 people facing homelessness each year. This paper will provide you with more information about our homeless system.

Need Help?

If you or someone you know needs assistance, you can find help using this list of Washington State Homeless Adult and Family Coordinated Entry Sites or 211 Washington Information Network. 



Notice of joint 2017-2019 Consolidated Homeless Grant and Emergency Solutions Grant funding application.

For more information contact Kathy Kinard via email at kathy.kinard@commerce.wa.gov or by phone at 360.725.2939.

CHG and ESG Homeless Housing Funding Application (Excel)
Active HMIS Projects List (Excel)
Draft CHG Guidelines (PDF)
CHG Guidelines Changes List (PDF)

Consolidated Homeless Grant

Consolidated Homeless Grant

State homeless resources are combined into a single grant opportunity for county governments and other service providers. This approach supports an integrated system of housing assistance and provides resources to assist people who are experiencing homelessness obtain and maintain housing stability.


Office of Homeless Youth

Office of Homeless Youth

Every night, thousands of homeless youth in Washington go to sleep without safety, stability, and support of a family or home. Our office leads statewide efforts to reduce and prevent youth homelessness through five priority service areas.



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Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS)


Point in Time Count

Homeless Point in Time Count

The Homelessness Housing and Assistance Act requires each county to conduct an annual one-day survey of people who are without permanent housing -- both of those who are sheltered and unsheltered. The 2017 Point in Time Count (PIT) will take place on January 26, 2017.

2016 Point in Time Count Final Summary (PDF)


Continuum of Care


Continuum of Care is a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Program to promote community-wide commitment and support to end homelessness. It provides grants to nonprofit agencies, state and local governments through an annual competition. Commerce works with 33 counties represented in the Balance of Washington State Continuum of Care Homeless Steering Committee, to submit a consolidated application for funding.