Finding housing for felons in Kansas is no easy task and we want to assure you that we understand your struggle. Every month we have dozens of people ask our organization for this information and as much as we wish we had a list of felon friendly apartments in Kansas, this information is too difficult to gather as we don't have enough staff on hand to handle the task.
With that being said, we've done the next best thing. Below is a list of organizations and resources in Kansas that will help you in your pursuit of felon friendly housing.
Felon Friendly Apartments in Kansas
JobsForFelonsHub.com is keenly concerned about housing for felons and how they can best transition back into society. That is why the following reentry listings for Kansas can be of use when you are re-integrating yourself into the mainstream. These programs help felons slowly get reinitiated to society so they can make a new start and proceed forward with confidence.
The DOC in Kansas’s Risk Reduction and Reentry Program
The Department of Corrections in Kansas features a Risk Reduction and Reentry Plan that is directed to reducing recidivism and enhancing a safe transition from prison life. For example, the first goal of the plan is to safely lower the number of revocations from parole supervision.
Other goals include the support of risk reduction and reentry work for felons and the establishment of a risk reduction plan from the time a felon enters the prison system to the time he or she is discharged for parole supervision. Objectives also include addressing cognitive issues, increasing the ability of felons to sustain employment and increasing services available for felons though CFBOs or Community and Faith Based Organizations.
The Kansas DOC also supports felons by making sure that they have the vocational skills needed that will make them viable employees. Transition is an important undertaking in the DOC as it is in other correctional agencies in the state.
Other Methods for Seeking Housing
Besides looking at the Kansas reentry information, you can also find housing or apartments through Craigslist and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, typically known as HUD. Housing authorities in Kansas also make it easier for a felon to reintroduce themself into society.
Working with HUD, housing authorities offer felons and other low-income people subsidized public housing. Should a felon not meet the annual median income (AMI) for his or her neighborhood, then they can go through the local housing authority or HUD to receive discounted or free housing.
Avoid Looking at Apartments in Major Apartment Complexes
In order to realize a successful housing search, it is best to steer away from searching for apartments in large Kansas apartment complexes. Doing so will only lead to frustration as the property management companies for these kinds of communities do background checks.
About all of these complexes will not approve felon applicants. Unfortunately, turning down an applicant who has a felony charge is not considered against the law. Therefore, it is better to refer to the reentry listings, search for rentals on Craigslist, or visit your local HUD office during your Kansas housing search.
Check Out Your Own Background
To make sure you are successful in searching for housing, you should start out the process by conducting a criminal background check on yourself. By doing so, you can review what a property owner sees when he or she performs a background check themselves.
To initiate the process, start by following this link. The search can be done for a small fee. It will be worth your money and while as the background will allow you to negotiate any lease terms with more self-assurance.
What is Legal Discrimination?
Legal discrimination covers felons as it is not considered against the law to turn down a felon for housing. Unfortunately, any felon who lives in Kansas or elsewhere in the US can be turned down. While this rule seems rather unjust, there is no current legislation in place to supplant it.
That can be confusing as most people think of discrimination as being illegal. However, legal discrimination is often practiced when loan brokers, for instance, check credit scores or landlords look at an applicant’s record for evictions or non-payment of rent.
These forms of discrimination are considered legal as they are based on a transaction that involves a business interest. A property manager is in his or her right to reject your rental application if they believe your felony charge may negatively impact the well-being of their community.
Discrimination becomes illegal when a decision is based on a person’s sex, age, race, ethnicity, family status, national origin or disability. Therefore, you can actually lease an apartment if a felony charge for illegal drug use stemmed from a mental disability.
If a property manager turns down your application then, he or she can be held accountable for illegal discrimination as the reason for the denial extended to a protected classification. Again, according to the Fair Housing Act, felons are a part of a class that is not protected under the law. So, normally you can expect to be turned down if a landlord considers your criminal history to be a potential risk. You can read more about illegal discrimination and the classifications by clicking on NOLO online.
Housing Laws and Felons
All in all, discrimination becomes illegal when it is based on a prejudice more than it is on a fact, particularly in the transaction of business. Therefore, when a felon in Kansas or elsewhere in the country is denied housing, it is typically because of his or her felony record. If you have served time for a violent offense then, you will probably be denied immediately. However, if the crime you committed is more than 10 years old and was non-violent in nature, there is a possibility that you may actually be approved.
Inside of Kansas as well as other states, a landlord still has to be careful as he or she can get charged with arbitrary discrimination. For instance, as previously mentioned, a landlord can get sued if he or she turns down an application where the felon wash charged with drug abuse – a practice that came about because of a mental impairment or disability.
In order for the landlord to be fair in this respect, he or she must be careful to make sure that his or her decision is based more on fact than prejudice. Decisions must be made that are objective and equitable. Unless the discrimination is based on an applicant’s national origin, ethnicity, family status, sex, religion or disability, it usually is not considered illegal. However, the property owner still must make sure that the measure of any decision leans more toward a doctrine of fairness. You can read more about arbitrary discrimination by referring to and following this link.
Kansas Housing Authority
The Kansas Housing Resources Corporation and Kansas Low Income Housing works in conjunction with the HUD in Kansas to provide rental homes to felons and others whose income does not meet the annual median income or AMI for a Kansas city or community. Housing authorities in Kansas have been established so felons and other low-income renters can live in a neighborhood without the concern that they cannot meet the rental criteria.
When you are transitioning from prison life, it is best to make an appointment with your local housing authority right way so you can add your name on a waiting list in case there are no move-in ready apartments.
The sooner you talk to an agency, the less time it will take for you to find a permanent residence. Heads of households, according to subsidized housing experts, include those individuals who are elderly or disabled, or households with children, one person or a working family. The housing authority is a go-between for the applicant and landlord. The agency cannot rent you an apartment.
Kansas Apartment Listings on Craigslist
Again, Craigslist in Kansas is another reliable source for a house search as the platform offers affordable rentals that are often not a part of a large apartment complex. Usually, the property owners are smaller real estate investors. Therefore, their criteria for applicants are not as regulated. Some of the advertisers on the site even forego a background check.
Even if a background check is completed, you will often find it easier to discuss your criminal record with one of these property owners. To review the Craigslist listings in Kansas, start by clicking on this link. Next, determine the city or town where you wish to reside, then click on the classification for housing. Add the rental range in order to short-list your selections.
Reentry Programs in Kansas
To get yourself back in the mainstream and make the transition more positive, look at the reentry programs that have been compiled by the JobsForFelosnHub.com site. Begin by looking at the following reentry listings for Kansas.
The Kansas Religious Community
You can also obtain referrals for jobs and houses by checking with churches and faith-based organizations in Kansas. The Kansas Department of Corrections can direct you to organizations that are faith-based. If you join a church, ask the pastor if he or she can provide you with some housing or job leads.
Referrals From Friends and Family
It never hurts to ask for support from family or friends. However, don’t depend on that support to extend to renting you a house or apartment. If you don’t want to end up in legal hot water, you need to make sure your name is included on a rental agreement. Having someone lease on your behalf can get you evicted or sued.
Additional Felon Housing Search Tips
Present a Professional Appearance
In order to make the most of your housing search, you need to dress and behave professionally. Don’t get on the defensive about your past but remain positive. Someone will notice your forward-looking attitude and appreciate it. If you need professional-looking attire, stop by the local thrift store to pick out a wardrobe.
Discuss Your Housing Needs in a Business-like Manner
When you set up a rental appointment, show your interest in the property and stick to the subject at hand. You want to build a professional rapport – one that can assist you in obtaining and remaining in permanent housing.
Reference the Reentry Listings
Refer to the reentry listings that the JobsforFelonsHub.com has gathered to keep you motivated. If you don’t find an apartment or house right away, there are transitional housing solutions.
Stick to a Schedule
Once you obtain a rental, make sure you stay consistent in following a work or job-hunting routine. If you have not found a job yet, stay positive. When one door shuts, remember, there are other doors that are open to you.