This blog post is by Elizabeth Nowrouz.
Hello all, allow me to introduce myself. I’m Elizabeth Nowrouz, and I’m one of the Americorps members serving at Texas Low Income Housing Information Service. Relatively new to this position as well as the state of Texas (I hail from Virginia), I’m learning a great deal each day about the fight for fair, affordable and decent housing for all Texans.
The Texas Low Income Housing Information Service offers a wealth of information for those searching for housing or in need of information on housing issues across the board. Online, two incredibly helpful resources are the Texas Housing Counselor and the Texas Tenant Advisor. Full links to both of those sites may be found at the bottom of this post.
First, our online Housing Counselor allows those in need of housing to enter their pertinent information into our interactive database, which will compile a list of apartment complexes and properties that meet their requirements. The Counselor uses information such as income level, ages of residents, and whether or not the residents have a disability to match them with potential properties. I am working presently to compile all of this year’s data to update the Counselor with the most recent figures available and to make it even more informative and user-friendly.
The Tenant Advisor website is an excellent resource to learn more about their rights as tenants. It offers sections on many different aspects of tenancy as well as suggested solutions to common conflicts related to housing. The Tenant Advisor is not intended to be a personalized for each individual, but a broad set of guidelines and potential issues that tenants might face. It is divided into three sections, each dedicated to: knowing your rights, fighting back against possible wrongdoing, and preventing problems and complications.
In addition to explanations of Texas housing laws, the Tenant Advisor site also features several video clips with attorney Robert Doggett, who expands upon and clarifies various housing law topics. We are working to add animated scenarios of common conflicts and potential resolutions, such as roommate disagreements and disputes over security deposits.
I hope to be posting here on the Texas Housers blog at least once a week, and covering a range of topics in those posts. A distinct portion of my Americorps service is targeted toward advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities, so, in addition to covering other topics, I look forward to expanding that discussion here at the Texas Low Income Housing Information Service.
Housing Counselor: http://texashousingcounselor.org/
Tenant Advisor: http://texastenant.org