Our History


Rent Well was created in 2009 and collectively overseen by a committee known as the Renter’s Education ALliance (REAL.) This committee was comprised of housing advocates, case managers, non-profits, tenants, housing providers, property managers, and governmental organizations from around the Portland Metro area. The curriculum was written by a professional curriculum developer and reviewed by Fair Housing Council of Oregon, Legal Aid Services of Oregon, Community Alliance of Tenants, and Multifamily NW.

The curriculum was maintained by the REAL Committee, Homeforward, and the City of Portland until 2016. In July 2016, Rent Well’s ownership and administration were transferred to Transition Projects, the largest provider of the Rent Well courses. Since the consolidation of the program’s oversight, many updates and expansions have occurred.


  • July – Successful passage of the Oregon House Bill (HB) 2724, which created a statewide Rent Guarantee Program to be paired with certified tenant education courses, like Rent Well.
  • Nov – 5,000 Rent Well students have graduated


  • Jan – Version 3.0 of the Oregon and Washington curriculum was released.
  • May – Rent Well obtained a $25k grant from the Oregon Community Foundation to translate the Oregon instructor and student materials into Spanish.


  • Jun – Successful passage of the Oregon Senate Bill (SB) 278, which extended eligibility for the Rent Guarantee Program to individuals between 16 and 26 years of age who were in foster care or the juvenile justice system within the past 10 years.
  • Aug – Version 4.0 of the Oregon and Washington curriculum was completed.


  • Feb – Advocated for a technical fix Senate Bill (SB) 1533, to the original Rent Guarantee Bill to make the guarantee more accessible to Rent Well graduates. Unfortunately, the bill died on the Speaker of the House’s desk.
  • March – We hired an Administrative Support Specialist. Staffing increased to 2 FTE positions for the program administration.
  • May – The 10,000th Rent Well student graduated.
  • May – The online/Zoom-friendly version of the curriculum was released.


  • Jan – Rent Well was awarded a $500k grant from Oregon Housing and Community Services to transform the curriculum into a standalone eCourse and mobile app in 7 different languages (English, Spanish, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Vietnamese, and German.)
  • May – Successful passage of the Oregon House Bill (HB) 2101, which was the technical fix bill to make the Oregon guarantee more accessible to Rent Well graduates.
  • July – The newly designed rentwell.org was released.
  • Aug 2021 – The eCourse version of the Tenant Education Academy was released.
  • Oct – A partnership between Pacific Screening and Rent Well allowed the creation of a new screening site so that both instructors and students can have access to easy-to-read background reports.


  • Jan – Rent Well was officially named the only state-approved tenant education curriculum in Oregon.
  • Jan – Program staffing increased from 2 to 6 FTE.
  • Feb – The eCourse opened to the general public. Thanks to additional funding from Oregon Housing and Community Services, the eCourse will be free for many Oregonians.
  • Mar – Apply Oregon, a joint venture between Rent Well and Pacific Screening, was launched to bridge the gap between graduates and Oregon landlords.
  • Mar – Version 5, now just known as the 2022 version, of the Oregon and Washington curriculum was released.