What are the threshold requirements to be eligible for CORES certification?

The CORES certification is designed for affordable housing owners/organizations that provide resident services in line with a robust coordination system.

A resident services coordination system includes all functions tied to the organizational mission to implement resident services in affordable rental housing, including corporate and site-based staff, funding, technology systems, services and programs, research and evaluation, organizational knowledge and tools necessary to support resident services.

While an organization does not need to offer resident services coordination or have resident services staff at all properties within their portfolio, it must be able to demonstrate that its infrastructure and implementation of a system of resident services has been scaled at multiple properties within their portfolio for a minimum of three years. 

For an organization to qualify for certification it must be able to demonstrate they meet the following requirements and provide the accompanying required documents to obtain a minimum score on the application questions. If an organization is unable to answer these threshold questions or provide the required documents, the organization WILL NOT qualify for CORES certification. 

  • An organization must fit one of the approved resident services coordination models ([Owner-Operator] Direct Resident Services Coordination Model, [Owner-Operator] Hybrid Resident Services Coordination Model, or Third Party Resident Services Contractor Coordination Model).

    Please Note: If interested in seeking certification under both the Direct and Third-Party models, please contact CORES for more information about the Streamlined Third-Party application option. 

  • An organization must have the selected model scaled at multiple properties in their portfolio. 
  • An organization must provide resident services coordination (consistent with the definition) at multiple properties (senior, family, and/or supportive) within their portfolio for a minimum of three years.
  • For Direct and Hybrid Model applicants: An organization must have a minimum of three years of experience as a multi-family housing provider.
  • For Third-Party Model applicants: An organization must use formalized contracts with the owner of a property where it is operating. Agreements should include or address: (1) scope of work/roles and responsibilities, (2) a staffing plan, (3) use of space agreement, (4) goals/evaluation, (5) terms and compensation, and (6) insurance requirements.
  • An organization must provide regional/corporate oversight and management of the property-based resident services coordination and implementation. Please see our Staffing FAQ for additional guidance. 

  • An organization must have a regional/corporate resident services function and have dedicated frontline resident services coordination staff (either hired directly or through a third-party contractor) on-site at properties. 

  • As part of its resident services coordination process, an organization must demonstrate the use of four tools: (1) Community Scan, (2) Resident Opportunities and Priorities Assessment, (3) Property Services Plan, and a (4) Resident Indicators and Analysis Report. Please see training video for additional information and guidance on these tools.           

  • An organization must describe how it addresses low participation in resident service programs/activities, including how the organization analyzes why there is low participation and responds. 

If an organization meets most of the requirements listed above, but is unable to meet ALL of the requirements listed, the organization MAY qualify for a Provisional CORES Certification. Please contact CORES staff for more information.