Administrative Data Helps Identify Benefits of Supportive Housing

This report describes the housing status of 17,471 King County households that received Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) in State Fiscal Year 2011 to gain a better understanding of how their housing status relates to receipt of social services and indicators of well-being. Five housing status categories were identified using administrative data: three groups received housing assistance (Public Housing Authority programs, the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program, programs recorded in the Homeless Management Information System) and two groups did not receive housing assistance (homeless, housed). One third of the TANF households got housing assistance from one or more of the three programs; over half were housed without help from any of the three housing programs; and 14 percent were homeless and not receiving housing assistance. TANF clients with housing assistance received more months of basic social services in the prior 3 years than those who were either homeless or housed without assistance. Those who were housed without housing assistance had the lowest rates of child welfare service use and the highest earnings. Households that received assistance for housing instability or risk of homelessness, recorded in HMIS, and those who were homeless without assistance were more likely to have substance abuse, arrests, and high frequency residential moves.

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