2011 Housing Needs Report - Executive Summary

Forging a Path Home

Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board

2011 Housing Needs ReportExecutive Summary

Nearly 1,650 CSB clients (people with intellectual disabilities, mental illness or substance use disorders) needed affordable housing as of June 2011.

Of those, approximately:

  • 1,152 (70 percent) can afford to pay no more than $205 per month toward rent. 213 (13 percent) have experienced homelessness as defined by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development. If "homeless" is more broadly defined to include those who are precariously housed and face imminent displacement, this number greatly increases. 
  • 198 (12 percent) are age 55 and older.
  • 565 (35 percent) face some type of barrier to securing housing:
    • Accessibility - 45
    • Interaction with the criminal justice system - 250
    • Credit issues or trouble paying bills - 270
  • 1,429 (87 percent) can live in apartments or townhouses, while 169 (10 percent) require a shared single family home (e.g., group home) and 48 (3 percent) require assisted living in a larger setting.
  • 1,564 (95 percent) require support services to obtain and maintain housing in the community. Of those, 750 (48 percent) need supervised or intensive levels of assistance.

In addition:

  • Fairfax County Public Schools identified 12 school age youth as homeless unaccompanied youth who may be eligible for CSB services as of September 2011.
  • The populations the CSB serves over the next several years will expand to include persons with developmental disabilities (especially autism), traumatic brain injury and veterans with service-related mental health conditions. A percentage of these populations will also require housing that is accessible and/or accompanied by personal assistance services, nursing, assistive technology and behavioral health supports.

If the CSB set a goal to meet the current existing housing need in ten years, the plan might look like this:

  FY 2012 FY 2013 FY 2014 FY 2015 FY 2016 FY 2017 FY 2018 FY 2019 FY 2020 FY 2021 Total
Intensive 17 17 17 17 17 17 65 17 17 16 217
Supervised 53 53 53 53 53 53 53 53 53 56 533
Supportive 81 81 81 81 81 81 81 81 81 81 810
Housing with Time-Limited/No Additional Services 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 5 86
Total 160 160 160 160 160 160 208 160 160 160 1,646

Note: see page 2 of the report for definitions of these service levels

The following table illustrates the gap between the number of consumers targeted to receive different levels of housing and supports each year and the number who can be served based upon existing resources:

  FY 2012 FY 2013 FY 2014 FY 2015 FY 2016 FY 2017 FY 2018 FY 2019 FY 2020 FY 2021 Total
  Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs Hsg Svs
Intensive Gap -15 -8 -12 -5 -15 -8 -14 -7 -15 -8 -62 -55 -15 -8 -14 -7 -15 -8 -13 -6 -190 -120
Supervised/ Supported Gap -92 -88 -93 -88 -93 -88 -93 -88 -39 -88 -93 -88 -93 -88 -93 -88 -93 -88 -96 -91 -932 -883
Housing w/ limited services gap 42   7   7   7   7   7   7   7   7   11   109  

Note: Hsg = Housing, Svs = Supportive Services

This chart reveals a substantial annual and total gap in housing and services for individuals who need housing units and services at the supervised and supportive levels. The annual gap for those who need intensive housing and services is relatively small in every year except FY 2017. This jump in the gap simply represents the plan to meet the increased need for assisted living programs by developing a new program in FY 2012-FY 2016 and beginning program operations in FY 2017. There is actually a projected overage in housing resources for individuals who need time-limited services or no additional supportive services in their homes. This overage could be redirected to reduce the gaps in the other two areas.

CSB clients who need affordable housing require:

  • deeply subsidized, affordable housing, paired with
  • supportive, supervised and intensive services, that are flexible, individualized, and linked to the client, not the site, and
  • flexible housing programs with adaptations and modifications that address key housing barriers including accessibility, credit issues and criminal history.

The following recommendations are offered to fulfill these requirements:

(1) Pursue opportunities with the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) to expand rental subsidies such as Housing Choice Vouchers, project-based Section 8 vouchers and Bridging Affordability rental assistance on an annual basis. When possible, CSB clients with very low incomes should receive a priority or preference for these resources.

(2) Support efforts to make local and statewide policy changes and develop resources that will stimulate the production of units for very low income households, especially those with disabilities. Likewise, play a key role in the development of the planned supportive services blueprint, which will help the county's Human Services agencies coordinate the services many persons with disabilities need to successfully participate in affordable housing programs.

(3) Review the structure and capacity of the CSB's residential supportive services system to accommodate new housing opportunities. Study the organization of the existing residential supportive services system to determine what additional capacity will be required, how to most effectively deploy existing staff to individual units throughout the county, what services could be provided by the private sector, and how additional capacity will be funded.

  • Instead of operating residential "programs," make supportive services independent from existing housing so clients can change service levels but retain their housing and vice versa.
  • Transition clients with existing CSB-funded rental subsidies to other rental subsidy sources.
  • Make new service funding sources flexible: base eligibility for service on the level of support consumers need, not on diagnosis.

(4) Expand the expertise of the CSB's Financial Assessment and Screening Team (FAST) around accessing funding sources for personal assistance services, assistive technology, nursing and behavioral supports.

(5) Collaborate with nonprofit housing organizations to create a "third party" master leasing program.

  • Provide subleases to consumers instead of program agreements.
  • Review consumers' housing status annually to determine whether they can be transitioned to a lease guarantee or a straight rental subsidy based on their income.

(6) Explore housing policies, initiatives and approaches employed by ex-offender advocacy organizations and re-entry housing programs nationwide, especially those that serve adults with mental illness and/or substance use disorders.

  • Collaborate with the FCRHA to review local Section 8 and Public Housing Administrative Plans to identify policies that will increase flexibility when determining whether individuals with criminal records who have successfully re-entered the community are eligible for housing choice vouchers and public housing.
  • Develop strong relationships with landlords throughout the county to expand the availability of housing for low-income CSB clients.
  • Assist tenants with paying the cost of premiums for landlords' commercial "damage" insurance, which reduces the risk to landlords if tenants damage the unit.
  • Develop a program to bond tenants with criminal backgrounds to protect landlords in case of loss of money or property due to tenant-caused damage to the unit.
  • Help consumers whose arrests did not result in conviction or those with minor convictions to expunge their records so they can legally qualify for housing.
  • Develop transitional and permanent supportive housing options for offenders who have been incarcerated for long periods of time and face significant barriers to obtaining community housing.

(7) Implement strategies to increase the number of physically accessible units designated for CSB clients. Either make existing CSB-designated units accessible or secure additional accessible units for long-term use.

  • Implement a rental accessibility modification program that provides grants to residents to make accessibility modifications with their landlords' approval.
  • Provide grant funding to landlords who want to make accessibility improvements to their units in exchange for reserving these units for CSB clients.
  • Work with the FCRHA to target project-based rental subsidies to existing accessible rental units.
  • Collaborate with the FCRHA, nonprofits and other partners to explore the development of additional housing opportunities for CSB clients under the Section 811 program.

(8) Create a CSB team to determine clients' eligibility for various sources of housing assistance, help clients apply for housing assistance, and help them locate and apply for community housing.

(9) Support interagency and public-private collaborations to develop appropriate housing options for homeless youth.

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