At the core of our work there are two main housing programs that address a diversity of needs. Homeownership and long-term rentals give people the opportunity to obtain safe, clean, and affordable housing. When families have reliable housing, it gives them a new sense of hope for the future, and greatly strengthens the fabric of the community.

Home Ownership

The high percentage of deteriorated rental apartments in Westown generates enormous tensions and perpetuates irresponsibility. Some blocks have 70% or more of their housing units managed by absentee landlords. Local ownership contributes much to our core economic viability. Our 53 homesteads are intentionally located on adjacent blocks for maximum impact and mutual support. We link up with local lenders and neighborhood associations. “There’s no place like a home... of your own!”


The issue of affordable housing is taking place all over Grand Rapids, but here on the West Side we have many above market value apartments moving in because of GVSU. With the rentals around becoming more centered towards students it is hard for the residents to find affordable rentals. As well as affordable homes to buy that aren't being bought by landlords to make more student housing. This has been an ongoing problem and one Westown has been trying to address the issues. We have 24 affordable apartments all located on the Westside. We rent our apartments to low/medium income families and individuals which in this market these types of apartments are hard to come by. This year we have helped to house 61 people with our rentals.