Management Resources

The Seattle Office of Housing offers resources and technical assistance on a variety of property and asset management topics.

View a list of Office of Housing Asset Manager contact information and project assignments.

Affirmative Consent

Affirmative Consent to Enter A Tenant's Housing Unit

Except in the case of an emergency or abandonment of a housing unit as defined by state law, it is unlawful in the City of Seattle to enter a tenant's housing unit without obtaining Affirmative Consent.  The City of Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections (SDCI) now enforces the right of access to housing units in the City of Seattle as required by SMC 22.206.180(F)(1). As recipients of public funding, affordable housing properties are subject to physical inspections and as part of this process your agency will have to ensure that proper notice is given and Affirmative Consent is obtained prior to an inspection.  Upon notification from the Office of Housing that a property will be subject to a physical inspection, it is recommended that property management staff promptly begin the process of informing residents of the scheduled physical inspection and obtaining Affirmative Consent. Typically you will receive notification from the Office of Housing of a planned inspection at least four (4) weeks in advance of the actual inspection.  At the time of the physical inspection, staff from the Office of Housing will rely on your staff's representation that the tenant household has consented to the inspection and will enter the unit.  The Seattle Office of Housing and SDCI have created two resident notifications that comply with the provisions of SMC 22.206.180(F).  If you have any questions regarding SMC 22.206.180(F)(1) please contact SDCI Code Compliance Section at (206) 615-0808.  If you have any questions regarding the Seattle Office of Housing inspection process, please contact Dan Foley, Portfolio Manager - Seattle Office of Housing, at (206) 684-0585.

The Housing Preservation Guide is a "road map" for assessing the needs of individual affordable housing properties and entire portfolios, as well as developing workable plans for preserving that housing. Hard copies of the Housing Preservation Guide come with a CD with sample documents that are not included within the PDF available above. Download the sample documents individually below:

In the City of Seattle it is illegal to discriminate in the rental of housing due to Race, Color, Ancestry, Sex, Disability, Creed, Religion, Age, Retaliation, National origin, Marital status, Political ideology, Parental status, Sexual orientation, Gender identity, Use of a service animal, Use of a Section 8, Certificate, Military status, or veteran status. The City of Seattle and US Department of Housing and Urban Development require fair housing posters be displayed in building lobbies, community rooms or leasing offices - wherever tenants and applicants can best see them. More information about fair housing laws, including resources for property managers, is available on the Seattle Office for Civil Rights website.

Homelessness Waiver Approval Form

Please complete this form to document reasonable accommodation and housing safety/stability transfers occurring within your agency's own housing portfolio of units restricted for homeless households by the City of Seattle Office of Housing (OH), King County Housing Finance Program (KC), and/or the Washington State Department of Commerce (COM). Refer to the King County Coordinated Entry for All (CEA) Operations Manual Mobility Request Policy/Form for transfer requests to units restricted for homeless households participating in CEA that are owned/operated by another agency. Housing providers are responsible to ensure compliance with record retention and WBARS reporting requirements. See instructions on the Homelessness Waiver Approval Form for details.

The City encourages the utilization of women- and minority-owned businesses (WMBEs) for the construction and other contracted services. Visit the State WMBE directory and the City of Seattle vendor directory to search for WMBE contractors. During construction, project sponsors must submit monthly WMBE reports providing data on the contractors and consultants working on the project:

Selecting a Tenant Screening Agency:  Guideline for criminal records reports for housing applicants

The Seattle Office of Housing's new guideline, Selecting a Tenant Screening Agencyis intended to assist housing organizations when they contract for screening services. Its purpose is to produce high-quality screening reports consistent with state and federal law and best practices. OH developed the guideline with assistance of housing organizations and tenant advocates participating in the Criminal Histories and Housing work group dedicated to increasing access to housing for people with criminal records.


Criminal Records and Housing Learning Sessions

The Office of Housing, working with affordable housing providers and tenant advocates, has designed and presented several educational sessions about housing for people with criminal records. This work is ongoing. Additional sessions may be planned as housing organizations examine admissions policies and procedures in light of large and growing number of individuals and families with a criminal record who need an affordable, stable place to live.

Criminal Records and Barriers to Housing

Many people with criminal records struggle to find housing and employment. As a community, we know that providing stable housing helps prevent recidivism, promotes family reunification, and is key to ending homelessness. At the same time, individual housing owners must be concerned with safety of residents and staff, protection of property, and fair treatment of all applicants for housing. These resources cover the national and local context of mass incarceration and racial disparities, provide insights about criminal records and screening reports, and discuss practical ways housing providers can assess their own application policies and procedures. The materials are intended for both organization management and asset/property management staff-anyone involved in admissions policies.

Housing Applicants with Criminal Records - Fair Housing Requirements and Best Practices for Individual Assessment

The following resources explore admissions policies related to criminal records and include information from the Seattle Office for Civil Rights on fair housing requirements. Topics for discussion include individualized tenant assessment and how to respond to a discrimination complaint, including examples from several housing organizations and a demonstration of software used by several affordable housing providers to assist in tracking applicant and tenant information, helping to ensure clear documentation and procedures.

Selecting a Tenant Screening Agency: Guideline for criminal records reports for housing applicants 
The Seattle Office of Housing's new guideline, Selecting a Tenant Screening Agency, is intended to assist housing organizations when they contract for screening services. Its purpose is to produce high-quality screening reports consistent with state and federal law and best practices. OH developed the guideline with assistance of housing organizations and tenant advocates participating in the Criminal Histories and Housing work group dedicated to increasing access to housing for people with criminal records. The guideline will be presented at the Housing Development Consortium's Assessment Management/ Property Management affinity group meeting. At the meeting, housing providers and legal experts will answer questions about criminal records and recent changes in tenant screening. 

Managing bed bug infestations is a growing problem in Seattle's housing facilities and is impacting management and operating expenses in Office of Housing funded properties. Developing a plan and utilizing available resources are vital steps in controlling infestation problems and associated expenses. For more on bed bugs, download "All you need to know about Bed Bug Beddy."

Bed Bug Fact Sheet - Public Health Seattle & King County