Rent Well is a tenant education class that teaches individuals their rights and responsibilities when it comes to renting. The course is taught in person or on Zoom at many non-profit and service agencies in Oregon and Washington. This course is also available as an online eCourse that can be completed at your own pace.
Whether you are interested in knowing your rights as a tenant, finding out how landlords might screen you for a place, or want to boost your apartment hunting skills, Rent Well is for you. This tenant education course is broken down into 12 sections. In this class, you will walk through the rental process and discuss the following topics and more:
- How laws affect your relationship with your landlord
- How landlords screen potential renters
- Different types of housing options
- Identifying your housing wants versus needs
- How to apply for a unit
- Reviewing rental agreements
- How to deal with a termination notice and eviction processes
- Understanding what your landlord expects of you
- Knowing what your landlord is responsible for
- How to be a good tenant and neighbor
- How to keep your home healthy and safe
- How your choices can affect your housing situation
- How to communicate with your landlord and neighbors
- Understanding the landlord’s point of view
- Setting goals and action steps to achieve your housing plans
Why Take Rent Well?
Individuals who are seeking this course come from many different backgrounds. A lot of individuals have been denied housing multiple times and come to this class to figure out why that is. Some individuals are working with case managers who enroll them into the class and they are not sure what they may get out of this course. And other individuals are first-time renters who’ve never read their lease agreement before and want to know how to make this the best experience possible.
Many individuals have never been taught about renting and their responsibilities as a tenant. It isn’t a high school class (yet.) Unfortunately, most of us learn from trial and error. This class can provide individuals the knowledge and skills to learn a better way from the get-go.
Not only would somebody get the education out of this class to help them maintain stable housing in the future, they also get to see a copy of their rental background report, the same report a landlord would see and make rental decisions on. Students also create a personalized housing portfolio to present to potential landlords and provides them with more information about the student’s background and strengths. Lastly, eligible graduates get to offer potential landlords the opportunity to register a Landlord Incentive Program which is paired with the Rent Well graduation certificate.
What is a Landlord Incentive Fund?
A Landlord Incentive Fund is funding that provides potential landlords with the assurance that if an eligible Rent Well graduate leaves their rental unit within the first year and owes unpaid rent, damages, or legal fees beyond what the security deposit covers, the program will pay the landlord up to a certain amount to cover those additional costs. The amount varies based on location. In Oregon, the guarantee is up to $5,000 beyond the security deposit. This funding can be the difference between a denial and approval.
Enrolling in a Class
You have two options for enrolling in a class.
- In-person or on Zoom classes taught at Rent Well provider agencies with Rent Well instructors, or
- The eCourse that you can take on your own time and pace with help from a personal Support Specialist.
There are pros and cons to both. For example, for some people in-person classes are the best way for them to learn but public classes can be limited or the class schedule might not fit their own schedule. So in that case, the eCourse might be a better fit. However, for individuals that aren’t comfortable navigating a computer or don’t have an email address, the eCourse might be a stressful and overwhelming process.
You are welcome to explore your options by clicking on the the links below.