New Yorkers Share Homes & Lives

Published on October 20, 2009, 10:57 am
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To save money in this slow economy, New York City residents in all five boroughs are turning to Home Sharing. It is a free matching service and affordable housing option created by the New York Foundation for Senior Citizens to help people find a home that they can afford.

Using professional social workers to screen applicants and a high-tech computer program called Quickmatch, people are paired according to compatibility. The phones are ringing off the hook.

It’s the only service of it’s kind in New York City. Home Sharing matches “hosts” who have extra private bedrooms in their homes or apartments to share with responsible, compatible “guests” seeking suitable, affordable housing. Guests contribute toward the hosts’ monthly household expenses. In some cases, guests provide household services in exchange for free or reduced living expenses. One of the matchmates must be age 60 or older.

An NBC and a CBS videos relevant to the story follow:

“The New York Foundation for Senior Citizen’s Home Sharing program is an innovative housing model that gives new meaning to the term affordable housing,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Providing older New Yorkers with options and services that helps them remain in their communities and homes is one of our priorities, and this free program does just that. Those accepted to the program contribute to the monthly household expenses, and, just as important, to the senior’s well being. Both hosts and guests receive the benefits of companionship and financial relief during this economic downturn.”

SUSAN, Manhattan: “The cost of living keeps going up and I’m on a fixed income so it helps. I am very grateful for this agency.”

MARIE, Bronx: “It’s a hard time for me and my family to make ends meet. Home sharing is the miracle I was waiting for. And the matching is just perfect.”

DIREEN, Brooklyn: “Living paycheck to paycheck is hard and these are tough times. But Home sharing has given me hope and a friend.”

JANE, Staten Island: “I’ve been a widow for 13 years and it’s nice to know someone is going to walk through the door. Someone who cares about me! It’s a touch of class with a human touch.”

LENA, Queens: “It’s the best thing that has ever happened to me! I found someone wonderful to live with and help with living expenses.”

Prior to moving in, the service offers a license agreement to help hosts and guests clarify the terms of their shared living arrangements. The service doesn’t end there. The staff continues to provide services even following move in.

About Home Sharing

Home Sharing is funded by New York State and New York City legislators, New York State Office for the Aging, New York State Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, New York City Department for the Aging and private contributions. To learn more about New York Foundation for Senior Citizens’ free Home Sharing service, please call 311, 212-962-7559 or e-mail You may also visit their website here.


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