A message from the author:

This booklet is intended to be a guide to help anyone who is homeless obtain and maintain a place of their own.

The information with in this booklet was originally compiled in co-operation with the Mental Health Association of Northwestern Pennsylvania and the author Thomas King (passed away in 2009).

This booklet is under constant revision, therefore any corrections and comments can be submitted to the Mental Health Association, 1101 Peach Street, Erie, Pa.

I hope it can prove beneficial to all.

Thank you

Thomas King (2006)

Table of Contents

§ Introduction


Applicants will be asked to supply some or all the information listed for persons who will be living in the residence. To receive some services, applicants will need to be considered homeless.

  1. Birth Certificate or Residence Status
  2. Photo ID
  3. Social Security Card
  4. Income Verification
  5. Past Jobs (If Any)
  6. Past Landlord References (If Any)

Expect to be placed on a List. Expect a Credit and/or Background Check. Remember that some applicants might have preference depending on:

  1. Age (Several categories or levels)
  2. Disabililty

Important things to determine before renting:

  1. Rent (+ Utilities) or (with Utilities Included)
  2. Furnished or Unfurnished
  3. Appliances and/or Laundry Hook-ups
  4. First Months Rent and/or Deposit

Also check your local telephone YELLOW PAGES for apartment listings.


Telephone Number for the Mental Health Association in Erie (814) 452-4462.

§ Emergency Shelters

§ The Ideal Housing Worksheet

§ Housing Contact Log

§ Chapter One

Permanent Housing-Erie County and City of Erie

  1. Erie County
  2. City of Erie Secdtion 8
  3. H.A.C.E-Housing Authority of the City of Erie
  4. Community Shelter Services
  5. H.A.N.D.S.-Housing & Neighborhood Development Services
  6. Veterans
  7. Various Apartments

§ Chapter Two

Short Term Housing-City of Erie

  1. Transitional Living Housing
  2. Community Living Housing

§ Chapter Three

Money, Finances and Appeal

  1. How much rent can I affort?
  2. Who can help with my down payment?
  3. How do I appeal of refused a rental?

§ Chapter Four

Meals and Food Banks-City of Erie

  1. Where can I get meals?
  2. Where can I get food to take home?