College Housing Assistance Program (CHAP)

For students who are homeless or near-homeless.


Program Information

Tacoma Housing Authority (THA) is providing rental assistance for Tacoma Community College (TCC) students who are enrolled in a degree program and who are homeless or near homeless. This rental assistance will help the participant (and their dependents) by providing housing subsidy to help pay the rent on an apartment or house.

CURRENT STATUS: CHAP is accepting applications for TCC students who are homeless or near homeless. There is a wait list. 

Tenant vouchers or property-based subsidies:

TCC and the Tacoma Housing Authority (THA) have formed a partnership to provide rental assistance to TCC students who are homeless or near-homeless. Assistance is provided in one of two forms:

  • A voucher that allows students the ability to pay a reduced rental rate at a THA-approved property; or
  • By availability of an apartment unit at a pre-determined property. Currently there are two properties close to TCC’s main campus. There is an additional property that will open in early winter 2020;
  • TCC offers security deposit assistance only. This does not include rental assistance for first and last month’s rent nor any fees required for move-in.

What is the difference between a tenant voucher and a property-based subsidized complex?

  • When a student receives a voucher, this allows the student to shop the housing market and select an apartment or rental house. Once the landlord approves the application, the voucher covers a portion to offset the rent at a THA-approved property. The student is responsible to pay the remainder of the rent, utilities, fees, and other expenses.
  • When a student is referred placement at one of THA/TCC partner properties, the student is placed at a specific subsidized complex where the rent is discounted. The student is responsible to pay the remainder of the rent, utilities, fees, and other expenses.

How long can I receive rental assistance?

  • For participants with a voucher, who complete an Associate's or Bachelor's degree may receive up to 1 year of additional housing payment assistance or five (5) years of assistance. The additional time (up to one year) will begin at the time credits were completed.


  • A participant receives an Associate's degree after receiving 18 months of CHAP assistance. The participant may receive an additional 12 months of assistance. The time limit for the additional 12 months will begin at the time the credits were completed.
  • A participant receives a BA degree after receiving 52 months of CHAP assistance. The participant may receive an additional 8 months of assistance. The time lime for the additional 8 months will begin at the time the credits were completed.

Contracts with a property-based subsidized complex specifies that tenants can renew their leases twice. The language is as follows:

The term of the Lease shall be for one year and Owner is prohibited from renewing the Lease for more than two (2) additional consecutive lease terms for a maximum duration of three (3) years. Tenants shall be notified of this limitation in their Lease.

To be considered for the waitlist, a student must:

  1. Be considered as homeless, *near-homeless, or exiting the justice system;
  2. Be currently enrolled at TCC with a minimum of six credits;
  3. Have a current FAFSA application completed;
  4. Make an appointment with a member of our team by emailing us at

Waitlists are generated by priority.

  1. Homeless students have first priority. This includes a household that is in an emergency shelter, in a transitional housing facility, is a client of a case-management program serving the homeless, is releasing from the justice system, or living in a place not suitable for human habitation.
  2. Students who are *near-homeless (couch surfing, evictions, loss of income, etc.) receive the next priority.

How long will I be on the waitlist?

It may be a long wait once you have been placed on the waitlist. While you are waiting you must do your part to keep us informed of any changes. The only way we can contact you is by using the information you provide. You must notify us in writing of any changes to your mailing address, phone number or other changes in your household. Failure to do so may result in being removed from the waitlist. 

What can I do while I am waiting?

  • You can consult other places for housing assistance.  Where you can find options for emergency housing, transitional housing, and other resources.
  • If you are a current TCC student, you may be eligible for emergency funds. Please contact Ruth Fritz at

What information will I need to provide when my name reaches the top of the waitlist?

When your name comes to the top of the waitlist, we will contact you. You will be provided with the required documents to be completed. Some of the documents you must provide include:

  • A copy of your financial aid award letter or summary print-out
  • Valid picture identification for all adults aged 18 and older
  • Social Security cards for everyone in the household
  • Birth certificates for minors
  • Income documentation, such as pay stubs or award letters
  • Documentation of immigration status (if applicable) such as a permanent residency card

Citizenship or legal residency is not required for all members of the household. Only one member is required to be a resident or citizen of the United States.

Any Other Questions?


Contact us for information