Houser Academy

Houser Academy

The Houser Academy was launched in 2020 with the goal of growing a statewide network of advocates who are already doing the work to expand rights for low-income households in Texas. This is achieved through connections, conversations, and courses on the basics of organizing, all culminating in a capstone project at the end of the year.

Now in its second year, the Houser Academy class is focused on tenants’ rights with the goal of policy change in our state and local government.

Learn more on our mission with the Houser Academy here. If you have questions about joining the Houser Academy, email Riley Metcalfe at

The design of the Houser Academy is to gather people from all walks of life from all over our state to bring unique perspectives to accomplishing the same goal: empowering low-income households in their communities. Historically, for the academy, this has manifested in a number of ways. Whether it was empowering public housing residents in San Antonio, low-income people looking for opportunity to purchase a home in Lubbock, getting engaged in local policy in Houston and many other places, Texas Housers’ objective is to fuel these ideas further along into reality.

While the academy is not a public endeavor, we wanted to make sure that anyone interested in learning more about getting engaged in advocacy in their communities can do so. This is why we’ve uploaded many of the courses in the Houser Academy online. We want to spread this knowledge to as many people who want it to effect change in their community.

Public Courses (click to view)

U.S. Civil Rights: A Brief History of its Progress and Regressions
Story-Based Strategy and Messaging
Holding Landlords Accountable
What Makes a Neighborhood Good or Bad?
Fighting Discrimination
Rental Housing Programs
Land Banks & Land Trusts
Issues Facing Texas Renters
Handling of Security Deposits
Outlawing Lockouts
Opportunity to Cure Late Rent
Restricted Entry by Landlord
Codify Expanded Warranty of Habitability and Improve Notice to Vacate Procedures
Right to Organize and Expanded Protection Against Retaliation
Expanded Protections in the Eviction Process
The Push for Statewide Tenants’ Protection Legislation
Building A Team
Public Information Requests
Analyzing Public Budgets
Tenants’ Rights in Texas
Written Repair Requests and Code Complaints
Housing Affordability 101
How to Fight an Eviction
Federal, State, & City Housing Departments – What They Do and What They Should Be Doing
HUD Funds and Programs
Texas Legislature 101
Executing a Campaign
Planning a Campaign
The Racial Wealth Gap
Data and Advocacy
Gentrification and Displacement
Working the Press to Amplify Your Story
Running an Effective Meeting
Neighborhood Disinvestment