NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor contributes to the community conversation on housing issues through a weekly column in the Daily World titled "Nailing it Down."


 Since 1999, the "Nailing it Down"articles have been published in the Daily World and other countywide weekly newspapers. NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor County has collaborated with local newspapers, elected officials and local experts to publish articles covering hundreds of topics.



Nailing It Down

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December 9, 2018

Nicholas Yuva has plenty of experience knowing the needs and concerns of landlords. Recently hired as the Landlord Mitigation Program administrator for the Office of Supportive Housing in the state’s Commerce Department, Yuva has spent more than 20 years as a landlord in Oregon and Utah.

This new program, which Yuva was hired to administer in July, aims to put to rest landlords’ concerns that their property might be damaged beyond the amount of a reasonable damage deposit or that subsidized tenants might leave them in the lurch with unpaid rent. It does so by offering to reimburse landlords for damages caused by subsidized tenants not covered by their deposit. No more need to require double damage deposits – you’re covered!

“My goal is to build landlord confidence in renting to subsidized tenants,” Yuva explained, adding that he has just finished a month-long tour of the state in which he talked with landlords and service providers about the new program.  In fact, we met him in person re...

December 2, 2018

Have you ever considered renting a house or apartment to someone who receives public assistance for housing? If you are a landlord who has avoided renting to someone receiving rental assistance money, this column is for you!

Recently two laws went into effects that directly affect landlords. Designed as a pair to help combat homelessness, they tackle the problem from two different angles.

The first one, RCW 59.18.040, makes it illegal to discriminate against tenants or potential tenants based on their source of income.  The second law, RCW 43.31.605, established the Landlord Mitigation Program, which makes it more attractive for landlords to rent to people with lower incomes who are receiving rental assistance by offering some financial protection for the landlords.

In a recent column, we discussed the first law, with the help of Cassie Lentz, the housing coordinator of Grays Harbor County’s Public Health and Social Services Department. Today, we will describe the other side of the coin,...

November 18, 2018

When it comes to homelessness, it can seem like a huge, complex problem and it is.  The number of homeless people keeps growing– but lasting answers, so far, have been allusive. Helpful changes are happening.

Thanks to a set of recently enacted state laws, we see some positive steps toward addressing certain aspects of the homeless and subsidized housing problem—something everyone working on the problems has been concerned about statewide.

In Grays Harbor, the best estimates are that up to 3,000 people are not stably housed. That is, some primarily rotate around staying with various friends and family, sleeping on couches, with no real place to call home. Of that number, some 500 to 700 are what you might consider “typically” homeless.  That is, they are sleeping in cars and under bridges or tarps with no real shelter at all.  Even in the foundation crawlspace under people’s homes!

Cassie Lentz, the housing coordinator for Grays Harbor County’s Public Health and Social Services Depar...

November 3, 2018

Who pays good money for something they hope to never use?  Well, we hope you do! 

We are talking about insurance. If you are a homeowner or a renter, having an insurance policy that is well suited to you and your life is of paramount importance to your future finances and well being, as well as to your current peace of mind.

It’s been a while since we’ve talked about insurance, but our recent columns on residential fires as well as the recent stormy, wet weather made us realize that it was time to tackle this topic again!

Thanks to Susan Gihlstrom, a broker at Dave Johnson Insurance in Aberdeen, for helping to clarify some of these issues.
We’ll start with a conversation about renters insurance for three reasons. 

First, we have a high percentage of renters in Grays Harbor County, especially in Aberdeen and Hoquiam, so this should apply to a good portion of our readers.

Second, many people who rent a home or apartment aren’t aware of their need f...

October 29, 2018

Are you an apartment dweller? Or do you enjoy an occasional stay in a hotel or motel? The theme for the last few blogs has been fire safety at home – but sometimes home is in an apartment and sometimes a hotel or motel becomes your home away from home. Wherever you live – even if it is just for a few days – it’s good to keep fire safety in mind.

Just like living in a typical stick-built house or a manufactured home, if you live in an apartment it’s critical to think through how you can prevent fire and respond to a fire alarm.

Here are some tips for apartment dwellers from the National Fire Protection Association:

  • Know the locations of all exit stairs from your floor. If the nearest one is blocked by fire or smoke, you may need to use another exit.

  • Know where the manual fire alarm boxes are in your building. (These are the alarm boxes on the wall with a pull bar.) Most are found within five feet of an exit door.

  • If there is a fire, pull the manual fire alarm box handle on yo...

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Aberdeen, WA 98520

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