Working to make safe, affordable housing accessible to all
Vibrant communities support successful businesses and self-sufficient people. Washington State is committed to seeing safe, decent, affordable housing for all residents. The Department of Commerce provides local governments, nonprofits and community action agencies with tools to ensure that everyone is housed in their communities.
Our support ranges from capital funding to build and preserve affordable housing stock to programs that prevent families from becoming homeless.
Washington State Housing Trust Fund
Communities across our state can’t keep up with demand for affordable housing. There is a growing gap between incomes and rents. Since 1986, the Housing Trust Fund has helped local authorities and nonprofits provide options to meet basic needs for thousands of low-income individuals and families.
In 2016, we celebrate 30 years of the Washington State Housing Trust fund. Read about our work in our 2016 report (PDF).
Shelter is a basic human need. Without a safe, decent place to live, people who may be struggling to survive have little hope of connecting with services and opportunities to tackle physical and mental health needs, go to school, get and hold down a job or provide for children and other family members. Stable housing supports a pathway to self-sufficiency.
Read more about homeless programs
In most cases the Department of Commerce does not offer direct public assistance. We fund other agencies and non-profit organizations in your community who can help you. Here are some frequently requested resources:
Mobile Home Parks Closing
Help with Heating Bill
Temporary Rental Assistance
Office of Crime Victims Advocacy
Office of Homeless Youth
Farmworker Housing (website)
Program Links and Resources
The Foreclosure Fairness Program offers free housing counseling, civil legal aid, and foreclosure mediation to homeowners.
If you live in a park that’s closing in Washington State and own your mobile or manufactured home, you may be eligible for relocation assistance. Mobile and manufactured home relocation assistance is provided to eligible low-income households on a on a first-come, first-served basis, with priority given to residents in parks closed due to health and safety concerns or park-owner fraud.
Weatherization is adding insulation, sealing cracks, and making other changes that reduce heat loss, save you money on heating bills and make your home or apartment healthier. The federal government and Washington State offer weatherization programs, which Commerce runs, for qualified low-income households.
The Department of Commerce regulates certification, accreditation, enforcement and compliance for firms and individuals to use lead-safe work practices when working on pre-1978 homes or child-occupied facilities.