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Housing after prison

Coming home from prison. It can be one of the most exciting, and complex moments in the reentry journey. From navigating transportation, overcoming social stigmas, and rebuilding trust with loved ones, one of the biggest hurdles you will face is housing. Every person’s re-entry journey will be unique, but there are some things to consider. In this blog, we hope to help you or your loved one one their re-entry journey to create a plan to overcome the hurdle of housing.

  • Start Early and Plan Ahead:
    • Begin your housing search well in advance of your release date. This proactive approach allows you to explore various options and increases your chances of securing suitable housing upon release.
    • Connect with prison social workers or reentry programs for guidance on housing resources and support.
  • Build a Support Network:
    • Reach out to family, friends, or mentors who may be willing to assist you in your housing search. A strong support system can provide emotional support and may even offer practical help in the form of co-signing leases or providing references.
  • Understand Legal Rights:
    • Familiarize yourself with local and federal housing laws that protect individuals with a criminal record. Some places have “ban the box” policies that restrict landlords from asking about criminal history upfront.
    • Research fair housing laws and know your rights to avoid discrimination based on your criminal record.


  • Utilize Reentry Programs:
    • Many reentry programs offer assistance with finding housing. These programs often collaborate with landlords who are willing to give individuals with a criminal history a second chance.
    • Seek out non-profit organizations that specialize in reentry services, as they may provide support in various aspects of your transition.
family visit to prison


  • Employment Stability:
    • A stable source of income significantly improves your chances of securing housing. Focus on finding employment or participating in job training programs to enhance your skills and increase your employability.
    • Maintain a positive attitude during job interviews and be prepared to address questions about your criminal history honestly and confidently.
  • Explore Transitional Housing Options:
    • Transitional housing programs offer temporary housing solutions with support services, providing individuals with the opportunity to stabilize their lives before transitioning to permanent housing.
    • Research halfway houses, sober living homes, or other transitional housing options in your area.
  • Build a Positive Rental History:
    • If possible, consider renting a room or subletting initially to establish a positive rental history. This can be beneficial when applying for more permanent housing in the future.
    • Demonstrate responsibility by paying rent on time and maintaining good communication with your landlord.
  • Education and Rehabilitation:
    • Highlight any educational or rehabilitation programs you’ve completed during your time in prison. This can showcase your commitment to personal growth and may positively influence potential landlords.

Finding a home after prison requires determination, patience, and a strategic approach. But making the effort to plan ahead, building a support network, understanding your legal rights, and utilizing available resources, you can increase your chances of securing stable housing and successfully reintegrating into society. Remember that the journey may be challenging, but with perseverance and the right support, you can build a brighter future for yourself.