SHARE Housing: How It Works

A fairly new program is gaining some ground in our area. It's called "SHARE Housing."

SHARE stands for Shared Housing and Resource Exchange.

Newswatch 16's Ryan Leckey explained how it all works from Honesdale on Thursday.

SHARE Housing is supported by the Pennsylvania Department on Aging. It's run by the state and funded through federal dollars.

Larisa Yusko who is a SHARE Housing Counselor says, "SHARE is an affordable housing choice that brings together homeowners who want to share their home with home seekers."

These are people looking for housing in exchange for rent, help around the house, or a combination of both.

"The home seeker receives their own bedroom and agreed upon use of the common areas. Every arrangement is unique depending on the needs, preferences, and abilities of the participants involved" Yusko said.

Organizers say to think of it like the TV show The Golden Girls. It's where one person, at least 60 years of age or older, shares their house with someone else who pays rent. The candidates are vetted through a thorough process.

WHO CAN PARTICIPATE: 

  • Anyone over 18 is eligible for this program.
  • Homes that are shared must be located in Monroe, Pike or Wayne Counties. Each home must have a designated bedroom for the Sharer.
  • There are two SHARE Housing Counselors, Ryan Lohman in Monroe County (570) 832-0538 and Larisa Yusko in Pike and Wayne Counties (570) 832-5133. You can also call the pair to be pointed in the right direction if you live in a different county that's not mentioned above.

OTHER FACTS FROM SHARE HOUSING:

  • The program was designed to help senior citizens age at home if they choose.
  • Home Sharers must be over 18, want to live in either Monroe, Pike or Wayne Counties and can NOT be charged more than 30% of their income.
  • In order to participate, an application must be completed with the SHARE Housing Counselor which needs to include three references; one professional or landlord and two nonrelated individuals and a criminal background check.
  • Matches are determined by home location, common interests, lifestyle, and resources.
  • Once we have a possible match, an introduction is scheduled.
  • If the introduction goes well, we then have a trial period. If the trial period goes well, then we sign a month to month contract.
  • The SHARE Housing counselors continue to check on the match on a monthly bases and handle any issues that might occur.

You can also visit the organization's Facebook page by clicking here.