There are two main features to the FSS Program:

  1. Financial Coaching: You will have access to a certified financial counselor that will help you identify your goals, create a plan to achieve them, connect you to resources, empower you to overcome barriers, and strengthen your financial capabilities.
  2. Free Savings Account: After increasing your earned income in accordance with program guidelines, the housing authority will begin to deposit money into a savings account on your behalf. You can use these funds to achieve your goals and to help pay for essential services like car repair or employment training.
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Success Story

Every financial journey starts with a first step. Yavette’s walking towards homeownership with Clarifi at her side.

FAQs

Do I have access to the escrow account anytime? Who manages this account?

You do not have access to the account during the program. Your housing authority manages the account for you.

Can I add to the escrow savings account?

The only way to add to your FSS escrow account is through an increase in income from work. When your rent increases, you will still pay your new, higher rent to your housing authority, but that increase in rent will also be credited to your account.

Can I use the savings account for emergencies?

You cannot use the account for emergencies. You can, however, request an interim disbursement during the program if you plan to use the money to make progress on one of the goals you have outlined in your contract.

Do I have to complete all five years of the program?

You do not have to complete the full five years, but you do need to complete the graduation requirements to receive the money in your savings. If you’ve completed all graduation requirements before your contract term is up, you can request an early graduation.

What are the graduation requirements?

There are three requirements you must meet to graduate from the program. First, you’ll need to be employed at the time of graduation. Second, all household members will need to be free of cash welfare assistance for at least 12 months prior to graduation. Finally, you must have completed the goals you set during the program.

Am I eligible to join the program if I’m unemployed?

Yes, heads of household who are not currently employed are allowed – and encouraged – to join the program. To join the program, you must be willing to seek employment since it is a graduation requirement.

Will I lose my voucher by joining the FSS program?

No, when you successfully complete the program, you may keep your rental assistance if you still need it. If you do not graduate from the program, you also will not lose your voucher or public housing unit.

If my rent decreases, is money taken out of my FSS escrow account?

No, during the program, money is only taken out of your escrow account when you request an interim disbursement to make progress toward one of your goals. When your income changes and you recertify with the housing authority your monthly escrow credit will change, but no money will be withdrawn from the account.

FSS Participant Journey

Counselors

Akirah Pressley headshot

Akirah Pressley

Program Ambassador

Alan Nesbitt headshot

Alan Nesbitt

Team Lead

Andre Rodriguez headshot

Andre Rodriguez

Counselor

Antoinette Johnson headshot

Antoinette Johnson

Counselor

Asel Umarova headshot

Asel Umarova

Counselor

Charles Barnett headshot

Charles Barnett

Counselor

Christina Napolin headshot

Christina Napolin

Team Lead

Danielle Anthony headshot

Danielle Anthony

Program Administrator

Deanna Quintiliani headshot

Deanna Quintiliani

Counselor

Kim Rodgers headshot

Kim Rodgers

Program Director – Compass FSS

Nicolas Leon headshot

Nicolas Leon

Counselor

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“Constant encouragement: Yeah, we can do it. It sounds corny, but I thrive off that.”

Halima C

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