How to Find Housing and Employment For a Recently Released Inmate

Find Housing and Employment For a Recently Released Inmate

If you are an inmate fresh out of prison, you will need a house and employment to reintegrate with society properly. Most inmates lose their homes during incarceration because it is difficult to maintain leases and pay rent. There are a few housing options to consider that can suit a recently released prisoner.  

Seeking employment can be challenging for someone who has been in prison. However, a few programs are available to help such individuals acquire jobs. You can also engage in a few activities that will make you appealing to employers.  

Housing For a Recently Released Inmate 

Finding a suitable place to live after prison is every inmate’s first and most crucial activity. Depending on your financial status and the conditions of your release, there are a few options to consider. The housing choices for a person recently released from prison include the following; 

  • Public housing 
  • Halfway houses 
  • Private housing 
  • Affordable housing 
  • Supportive housing. 

Public Housing 

The government owns and controls the public houses; they can be the property of local, state or national government. All tenants get a reduced rent rate. In general, individuals pay about 30% of their income towards rent.  

Public housing usually has some set rules that the tenants should meet. You should consult the public housing agency to know if you qualify to rent such a house in your area. The houses are ideal for inmates who meet the terms and conditions, as they are relatively cheap.  

Halfway Houses 

Halfway houses are transitional accommodations inmates can stay in before finding a more permanent residence. These transitional houses give inmates the time needed to integrate into society slowly. You can look for a job and health insurance during your stay there. 

Some halfway houses are state-sponsored. Sometimes the sentencing authorities or the prison holding an inmate may require an inmate to stay in a transitional house as one of the conditions of their release. Such prisoners will have to stay in the halfway house for the recommended time before they can move out.  

Transitional houses also offer individuals other services, such as counseling, to help them easily transition to society. Few rules come with staying in a halfway house, and sometimes there is usually a curfew in place.  

Guide to Finding a Halfway House  

A transitional house is a good fit for a recently released inmate. The BOP works with local reentry centers to facilitate prisoners’ reintegration into society. Following this simple guide, you can find a transition house through the Federal Bureau of Prisons.  

  • Step one: Visit the federal bureau of prisons website 
  • Step two: Click on the ‘about us icon and select ‘our facilities’ 
  • Step three: Click on Reentry centers 
  • Step four: Scroll down to see the reentry centers in your region 

Subsidized Housing  

Affordable houses reduce the rent burden for low-income families and individuals. In general, inmates have little to no income, making such houses an ideal fit. If your time in prison has affected your finances, contact the Department of Housing and Urban Development to apply for a house.  

Private citizens typically own affordable houses. However, the government heavily subsidizes the tenants’ rent through the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.  

Supportive Housing  

Unlike halfway houses, supportive housing provides a more permanent solution to individuals. It can offer stable housing to recently released inmates and additional services such as counseling for people with mental health problems and addiction issues. 

The program aims at providing permanent housing for low-income families, the elderly, people living with disabilities, individuals with mental issues, and people battling addiction.  

Supportive housing is run by a committee corroborating with the government to reduce homelessness. 

The NGOs that help run the supportive housing sector provide inmates with assistance, such as information on their rights as tenants. They also help individuals maintain healthy relationships with their landlords.  

People can transition from supportive homes as they get enough support to allow them to build their lives. Inmates can enroll in a supportive home for as long as they want until they find footing. 

Search for supportive houses in your area and find out if you are eligible.  

Private Housing  

Private housing entails buying your own house to leave in. If inmates have enough resources, they can legally purchase a house of their choice. In doing so, they will own their accommodations as any other citizen would.  

An inmate can also lease a house or apartment. Using regular leases, an inmate recently released from prison can acquire a home if they can afford to pay their rent promptly. As long as they are not violating any terms of their release, released prisoners can own and rent private houses of their choosing.  

How a Recently Released Inmate Can Find Employment  

Most employers are hesitant to employ recently released inmates. However, a few things could help an individual acquire employment after prison. Some tactics and programs you can use to help you find a job include; 

  • Use careeronestop 
  • Dress appropriately 
  • Become an active community member 
  • Work Opportunity Tax Credit 
  • Maintain discipline and promptness  
  • Create a good resume 
  • Be persistent In Job seeking 
  • Maintain proper mental health  
  • Acquire additional skills 
  • Use the Office of Justice Programs Reentry Resource Center 
  • Start your own business 
  • Contact the national reentry resource center. 


One-stop career is a program that receives sponsorship from the United States Department of labor. They have several offices across the country that helps individual to find employment that suit them best. A recently released inmate can visit the closest office to get assistance in seeking a job. 

Dress Appropriately 

Ensure you are always presentable when attending any interview. You should dress for the job you want. If you do not have the right attire, consult with the non-profit organizations that help inmates reenter society. Most NGOs will provide you with clothes for the job search and prepare you on how to conduct yourself. 

Becoming an Active Community Member 

Being an active community member will prove to employers that you are ready to integrate with society. As a recently released inmate, you should get involved in your local church or any other activities requiring public participation. Showing you can be reliable will increase your chances of getting a job. 

Work Opportunity Tax Credit 

The government offers employers a break from their taxes if they employ marginalized groups, which include recently released inmates. If you qualify for a work opportunity tax credit, you can use it to encourage potential employers to hire you.  

Create a Good Resume 

A good resume will be the key to getting a good job. A potential employer will gauge you by your resume. If you cannot create a perfect resume, get assistance from several reentry organizations that help released inmates create one. 

Be Persistent In Job Seeking 

During your job search period, you will receive several declines. You should not give up on your hunt. Keep approaching potential employers; eventually, you will get one to give you a chance. 

Maintain Discipline and Promptness 

If you get an interview, you should show up on time and behave respectfully. Your imprisonment will come up, so you should be ready with respectful and precise answers. If you get a job, be a model employee. You may need to start at a lower level, but if you maintain a good work ethic, you can slowly get a raise and a better placement. 

Maintain Proper Mental Health 

Serving a prison sentence can greatly affect your mental health. It can affect your ability to operate in the real world, making it difficult to acquire and keep a job. You should seek professional help to keep your mental health in order. You can also join support groups of individuals sharing similar experiences with you to help you cope. 

A potential employer will hesitate to employ you if they think your mental health is compromised. 

Acquire Additional Skills 

Having many skills can make you lucrative to potential employers. It also increases the number of jobs you can apply for. It is always possible to acquire new skills. After being released from prison, you can enroll in a local college and get a degree. If you have yet to graduate high school, you can take a parallel course and get your diploma. 

Investing in yourself will make you more valuable to employers, increasing your chances of employment. 

Office of Justice Programs Reentry Resource Center 

The national government has programs that aim at helping individuals reenter society. Through the Office of Justice Programs Reentry Center, the government tries to reduce the re-incarceration rate by providing recently released inmates with the proper resources they need to integrate into society. 

You can get leads on jobs from the program. They also offer mental health resources to the former inmates and, at times, job training to willing and eligible individuals. 

Start Your Own Business 

Hiring yourself is also a good option. Since few people may be willing to take a chance on you, you can take a chance on yourself. You can utilize your skills and convert them into a business. Growing your own business will be difficult, but you can create a stable income with enough commitment. 

Identify what you are good at and find the financing necessary to turn it into a business. Create a comprehensive and compelling business plan. Some people and institutions will be willing to invest in you if you provide a viable business plan. 

National Reentry Resource Center 

You can visit the Reentry Service Directory to get information on the programs and organizations available to aid you in re-entering society. The database contains a list of non-profit organizations, agencies, and other services that can aid a recently released inmate find a job and reintegrate into society. 

Other Financial Sources For a Recently Released Inmate 

There are additional financial aids that can help a recently released inmate to operate in the free world. They include the following; 

  • Food stamps 
  • Supplemental Security Income benefits 
  • Housing Choice Vouchers 
  • RxAssist 

Food Stamps 

The government has a Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP). Commonly known as food stamps, they allow individuals to shop for essential foods without spending their money. A recently released inmate can qualify for the program and get aid in buying food if they have not found a job that can properly sustain them. 

Housing Choice Vouchers 

You can consult your local public housing agency to determine your eligibility for housing vouchers. The government issues vouchers to low-income families to aid them in paying their rent on privately owned properties. 

A recently released inmate earning a small income can easily qualify for the vouchers. The government issues them through the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Assistance in paying their rent could greatly help former prisoners reenter society. 

Supplemental Security Income Benefits 

Recently released inmates over 65 years who have had stable and consistent employment for a long time can qualify for supplemental income. The social security administration offers the elderly or people with disabilities additional finances to fund their expenses. 


RxAssist helps low-income individuals acquire their medication at low or no cost. If you require certain medications, you can visit the site and search for programs from various pharmaceutical companies to help you get the drugs. 

Parole and Probation 

A recently released inmate should always follow the terms of their parole and probation. Ensure you consult with your officers before you acquire a house or a job. They can help you with the job, and house search and will guide you to ensure the job or home does not compromise your freedom. 

Can a Recently Released Inmate Get a Job and a House? 

Yes. A recently released inmate can get a house and a job through various reentry programs available for everyone. If you are committed to getting your life back, there are several tactics you can use to make yourself a productive member of society.