Project HOME

By on May 26, 2019 in People

If you’ve ever heard of rocker Jon Bon Jovi’s philanthropy on behalf of a Philadelphia non-profit that creates permanent housing and support resources for the city’s homeless population, that was Project HOME.

The HOME stands for Housing, Opportunities, Medical and Education. It makes sense that Housing is first in the list, because many homeless advocates consider stable housing to be the most pivotal initial step to getting homeless Americans back on their feet.

The organization’s mission statement: “The mission of the Project HOME community is to empower adults, children, and families to break the cycle of homelessness and poverty, to alleviate the underlying causes of poverty, and to enable all of us to attain our fullest potential as individuals and as members of the broader society. We strive to create a safe and respectful environment where we support each other in our struggles for self-esteem, recovery, and the confidence to move toward self-actualization.”

It may sound ambitious, but it’s working. Project HOME just celebrated its 30th year and is on track to provide 1,000 units of affordable housing in Philadelphia within a few years. The organization is also a longtime Yardi client.

We recently caught up with Patrick Farrell, Project HOME’s business/financial analyst, who is a passionate advocate for the non-profit’s use of the Yardi affordable housing platform.

Farrell has worked on Project HOME’s Yardi platform for the last six years – the organization has used the software for about twice that duration.

“Yardi is the workhorse application for us at Project HOME,” said Farrell, whose job supports the property, accounting and human resources departments of the non-profit. “It is the foundation of all of the other applications that we use throughout our business.”

As the organization’s mainstay database, Yardi Voyager data powers all the transactions, decisions and records that are essential to keep a non-profit housing provider running smoothly. One of the attributes that Farrell appreciates most about Yardi’s affordable housing platform is the always up-to-date compliance functionality.

“All of our compliance rules are audited through our Yardi system, all the database information comes out of Yardi, and it’s definitely the system our team touches the most,” Farrell said.

As a forward-thinking technologist, Farrell is anxious to explore how the most cutting-edge technologies might have roles in Project HOME’s future business. He’s already investigated how bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies might be used to pay rent, for example.

“I like to push our outlook a bit technically and encourage our other departments at Project HOME to innovate along with us,” Farrell said. To that end, the non-profit recently implemented Yardi’s RENTCafe´ platform as a payments-only interface. This will allow residents to pay their rent online each month. So far, the software has been implemented at one Project HOME community and more are expected to quickly follow.

“The typical Project HOME resident moves in and stays with us long term, so we want to make it easy for them to make their monthly rent payments,” Farrell said. “Our properties are very modern, cutting edge buildings, and we expect our software to keep up with that vision as well.”

He hopes to push the organization further as the app-based economy pervades.

“I would love for us to take advantage of all of the new apps, tools and features that Yardi Voyager and the Yardi affordable housing suite has to offer us,” Farrell said. As Yardi’s platforms continue to evolve, many more such applications will be available for clients and residents.

Yardi is Energized for Good and thrilled to support clients like Project HOME as they improve the lives of the formerly homeless in Philadelphia.

Learn more about Project HOME.