Bissell Centre’s Ready To Rent Program

The Cause

Bissell Centre offers several programs that work with people experiencing homelessness or individuals and families who are unstably housed. Some of the people we work with have poor credit, no references, a criminal history, and other screening barriers which can prevent them from finding places to rent. Many are also unaware of the rights and responsibilities of both tenants and landlords in a renting relationship.

The Ready to Rent program provides education and knowledge to landlords and tenants to help promote healthy tenancies and secure housing. Already an established program in BC, Ready to Rent educates prospective tenants on how to search for housing, their rights and responsibilities as tenants, communication and conflict resolution skills, budgeting and financial management skills, and how to clean and maintain a rental property.

Two of Bissell Centre’s staff have attended Capital Region Housing’s Train the Trainer program, and will be offering this 6-week course four times over the next year. Funding will be used to purchase the Ready to Rent workbooks and bus tickets for course participants to travel to and from the course every week. Financial assistance from Field Law will make the Ready to Rent program more readily available to those who need it most.

Who Will it Benefit?

There are currently an estimated 1, 752 people living on the streets of Edmonton, and over 100,000 people living in poverty, 30,000 of whom are children. Many families and individuals in our community are unstably housed, which adds a great deal of stress to people's lives and prevents them from tackling larger issues.
Bissell Centre works with over 5,000 people every year, empowering people who are living in poverty or experiencing homelessness to move towards a more prosperous future. Bissell Centre offers several programs that work to house people and increase housing security. The Ready to Rent program will benefit many of our clients by reducing barriers to housing and empowering them with the tools and knowledge they need to have a healthy tenancy and a healthy relationship with their landlord.