Get ready for housing week 2024:

2023 Housing Week Schedule

Check back regularly as we add more Housing Week events!


Preserving Manufactured Housing Communities

Tuesday, October 17, 8:30-9:30 AM
Hosted by: Happy Valley Neighborhood Association Housing Committee
Location: Lecture Room at Bellingham Public Library |
210 Central Avenue Bellingham, WA 98225


In 2022, the City of Bellingham completed a several year strategic development process focused on the preservation of manufactured housing communities in support of maintaining local affordable housing. ROC Northwest has helped 23 manufactured home communities within Washington State become resident owned communities (ROC), giving those residents the opportunity to realize affordable housing security. Through this program, residents incorporate as a limited equity housing cooperative, obtaining financing, and purchase the parcel of real estate where their homes are located. This session highlights the collaboration of COB with ROC Northwest in the development of the recently adopted protective overlay zone and supporting regulations for manufactured housing parks within Bellingham.

This event features the following panel:

  • Chris Behee, GISP, Long Range Planning Manager | City of Bellingham Planning & Community Development
  • Victoria O’Banion, Marketing and Acquisitions Specialist | Northwest Cooperative Development Center
Barriers & Opportunities for Housing Access

Tuesday, October 17, 1:30-3PM
Hosted by: Unity Care NW
Location: Schayes Community Room at Unity Care NW | 220 Unity Street Bellingham, WA 98225


Service providers offer diverse perspectives to the barriers and limitations their clients face in accessing permanent housing locally and what opportunities they see with new and upcoming projects aimed at better serving people experiencing homelessness including The Way Station and the Alternative Response Team.

This event features the following panel:

  • Teri Bryant (she/her) Director, Whatcom Homeless Service Center | Opportunity Council
  • Katie Stephens, MSW, Patient Engagement Program Manager | Unity Care NW
  • Jon Dukes, LICSW, Alternative Response Team (ART) & Co-Responder Program Supervisor
  • Ashley Buerger (she/her) Executive Director | Road2Home
An Overview of Housing Subsidies in Whatcom County

Tuesday, October 17, 3:30-5:30 PM
Hosted by: Lydia Place
Location: Heart House at Lydia Place | 1705 Gladstone Street Bellingham, WA 98229


We invite you to join us at Lydia Place for an engaging panel discussion on the topic of housing subsidies in Whatcom County. This panel will include professionals from Opportunity Council, Bellingham Housing Authority and Lydia Place. Gain valuable insight, ask questions, and explore the systems that partner together to provide rental assistance, combat homelessness, and promote housing stability in our community. Whether you are a landlord, advocate, or interested community member, we hope to see you there for a chance to learn and connect. Snacks will be provided at Heart House.

Panel Details

Ty Terrwyn

Ty was hired as a temporary receptionist at the Bellingham Housing Authority 22 years ago and it did not take long for her to realize her passion for the agency’s mission. Since then, she has developed an acute understanding of HUD regulations, BHA policies, and the procedures throughout the agency and is always looking for ways create improvements. She has recently stepped into the realm of data and systems management and has played a major role in the research and development of how the agency might best serve its clients and the community post-COVID. She also really enjoys working with families and being a resource for agency staff.

Louis Walbrek

Rapid Re-Housing Program Manager with Lydia Place who has been with the program since 2018. Dedicated to supporting families in finding housing that they can see becoming their future home. Sometimes this means housing in the right school district, with a yard for the family dog, or within a short distance of family, friends, and community. Louis supports a team of passionate case managers and works to build relationships with local property managers to help address the housing crisis in our community.

Sadie Townsby

After studying Human Services at Western Washington University, Sadie joined the Rapid Re-Housing Team at Lydia Place as a case manager in 2021. Driven by the desire to make a positive impact, Sadie passionately advocates for families experiencing homelessness to gain housing, meet their goals and access community resources. Sadie strives to engage in ongoing opportunities that help to build landlord engagement at Lydia Place and community awareness. It is evident that Sadie leads her work with efficient problem-solving, resourceful communication, and compassion.

Kelsey Steed

Landlord Liaison at the Whatcom Homeless Service Center at Opportunity Council. Kelsey provides property managers and clients and their case managers with guidance and support in affordable and subsidized rental management. She also provides basic landlord-tenant law and fair housing related education and resource referral assistance to owners and renters in Whatcom County to help retain housing and prevent eviction. Kelsey is passionate about maintaining positive and productive relationships between community partners, property owners, and renters, while advocating for local innovations to better support low-income residents.


Whatcom Housing Alliance Fall All Member Meeting

Wednesday, October 18, 8:30AM-12PM (programming starts at 9AM sharp)
Hosted by: Whatcom Housing Alliance
Location: The Hotel Leo Crystal Ballroom | 1224 Cornwall Avenue Bellingham, WA 98225


Come mingle with current and prospective members of the Whatcom Housing Alliance starting at 8:30AM with a continental breakfast and coffee. Programming starts at 9AM sharp with keynote speaker Stefan Pellegrini, Principal of Opticos Design. Opticos was founded in 2000 on the belief that walkable places are critical for healthy, resilient, and equitable communities. Through that expertise, they introduced the concept of Missing Middle Housing, a transformative idea that highlights the need for diverse, affordable housing options in walkable urban places. In addition, they are leaders in the development of  Form-Based Coding, zoning reform needed to make those walkable places a reality. Through their work, they are changing cities, communities, and lives. Following a keynote, attendees will be collaborating via breakout sessions. This event is open to everyone, but the content is designed for current, prospective, and future members of the Whatcom Housing Alliance.

More to announce as we get closer! For now, we hope you’ll register today!

Housing Policy – Predicting the Future

Wednesday, October 18, 3:30-5:30 PM
Hosted by: Building Industry Association of Whatcom County
Location: Virtual event – click below to watch a recording


Will jack booted thugs steal your gas stove out of your kitchen? Will evil developers cut down every tree in Bellingham? Will rental protections cause landlords to convert their duplexes to mansions and sell them to Californians? Listen and discuss at this virtual presentation as representatives from the State legislature, County Council, city planning departments, and private developers give their best guess for the future of housing policy in Whatcom County.

This event features the following panel moderated by Dan Dunne, President of the Building Industry Association of Whatcom County:

  • Sharon Shewmake, 42nd District State Senator
  • Alex Ramel, 40th District State Representative
  • Kaylee Galloway, District 1 County Councilmember
  • Todd Donovan, District 2 County Councilmember
  • Blake Lyon, Director of Planning and Community Development for Bellingham
  • Perry Eskridge, Government Affairs Director of the Building Industry Association of Whatcom County
  • Denise Lones, Founding Partner of The Lones Group.
Whatcom County Business Candidate Virtual Forum

Wednesday, October 18, 5:30-9PM
Hosted by: Building Industry Association of Whatcom County
Location: Virtual event – register for link


WHA, Whatcom/Bellingham Chamber of Commerce, the BIA and the AGC invite you to join us for our Housing Forum with County and State candidates. We will be hosting this forum for our members to discuss affordable housing priorities and solutions with prospective elected officials.

This is also an opportunity call attention to our policy agenda and steer in-depth in conversation towards our key priority areas of work. This forum will include candidates for the following positions:

  • County Executive
  • Whatcom County Council – At Large
  • Whatcom County Council – District 4
  • Whatcom County Council – District 5
  • City of Bellingham – Mayor
  • City of Bellingham Council – At Large
  • City of Bellingham Council – Ward 1
  • City of Bellingham Council – Ward 3


Lunch and Telegraph Townhomes Tour

Thursday, October 19, 1-2PM
Hosted by: Habitat for Humanity Whatcom and Kulshan Community Land Trust
Telegraph Townhomes | 1050 Telegraph Road Bellingham, WA 98226


Habitat for Humanity Whatcom and Kulshan Community Land Trust lead a tour of their joint affordable homeownership project at the Telegraph Townhomes. Lunch is provided! Please register to be included in the head count for lunch.

Parking Reform for Affordability

Thursday, October 19, 5-7PM
Hosted by: Whatcom Housing Alliance
Location: Structures Brewing  | 601 West Holly Street Bellingham, WA 98225


This workshop will explore why and how Bellingham can reform parking policies to support community goals including affordability, efficient transportation, and compact development.

Every time somebody purchases an automobile they expect governments and businesses to provide off-street parking for their use. These facilities are expansive and environmentally harmful. Although in North America most parking is unpriced, it is never really free; the choice is between paying for parking directly, through user fees, or indirectly through higher taxes (for government parking), higher rents (for residential parking), lower wages (for employee parking) and higher prices for other goods (for parking at commercial destinations). Paying indirectly is inefficient and unfair because it increases traffic problems, and forces people who drive less than average to subsidize parking facilities of people who drive more than average. Since vehicle travel increases with incomes, this tends to be regressive.

As a result, many communities are reforming their parking policies to more efficiently manage parking so fewer spaces are needed to serve motorists’ demands. The potential savings are huge. For example, in areas with high land values, each parking space costs $20,000 to $60,000, adding 10-20% to the costs of building lower-priced housing. Experience in many cities demonstrates that these costs can be reduced significantly through better policies.

This presentation will identify a menu of possible parking policy reforms, and discussion of why and how they can be implemented in a particular community.

This event features Todd Litman, the founder and executive director of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute, an independent research organization dedicated to developing innovative solutions to transport problems. His work helps expand the range of impacts and options considered in transportation decision-making, improve evaluation methods, and make specialized technical concepts accessible to a larger audience. His research is used worldwide in transport planning and policy analysis.



ADUs Have a Role In Housing Affordability: Washington State Legislation and Local Impacts

Friday, October 20, 9AM-1PM
Hosted by: Whatcom County Association of Realtors
Location: Holiday Inn & Suites – Bellingham Airport |
 4260 Mitchell Way, Bellingham


SOLD OUT Building industry professionals and people interested in building an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) are invited to attend to learn more about ADUs, the recent Washington State legislative changes and local ADU regulations and opportunities. REALTORS® and real estate licensees who attend can earn 3 Continuing Education Credits and are encouraged to invite guests.
Instructor Brenda Nunes will review new Washington State legislation which provides for more ADUs, examples of different types of ADUs, challenges and obstacles for adding ADUs, evaluating properties for the potential of adding an ADU, costs and potential financial benefits and ways to finance ADUs, and potential for turning an ADU into a condo. A panel of local subject matter experts will serve as resources for Q & A discussions about local code and permit changes and the building process and costs. Panel members are working professionals who are actively involved with ADUs, including local planning officials, planning consultants, designers, builders, lenders and a guest attorney from Seattle.
Pre-registration is required. Sign up today!
Shared Housing for Older Adults (and younger ones too!)

Friday, October 20, 2-3:30PM
Hosted by: Aging Well Whatcom, an initiative of the Chuckanut Health Foundation
Location: Virtual event – register for link


A variety of models exist for shared housing or co-living, but they are still relatively undeveloped in Whatcom County. Join Aging Well Whatcom in this virtual session to learn about a range of shared housing models and how they can improve the lives of older adults – and younger adults too! A panel of older adults living in a variety of shared housing arrangements will discuss their experiences, including their reasons for choosing to live with others and how it benefits them. At the community level, shared housing is one strategy among many for addressing our housing crisis, by making more effective use of our existing housing stock. The session will include participant discussion on how our community can facilitate the creation of more options for shared housing, and the benefits for people of all ages and the community as a whole.

This event features a panel moderated by Lara Welker, Project Lead for Aging Well Whatcom.

ADU Design Competition Awards Ceremony

Friday, October 20, 4:30-6:30 PM
Hosted by: Whatcom Housing Alliance
Location: Social Lounge at Hotel Leo | 1224 Cornwall Avenue Bellingham, WA 98225


With the support of AARP, the Whatcom Housing Alliance is organizing an ADU Design Competition to encourage architects, designers, and creative individuals to come up with innovative solutions that spark new ideas and push the boundaries of what’s possible in ADU construction. We believe ADU’s have an important role to play in expanding housing choice and increasing housing affordability in Bellingham.

Celebrate new ADU policy with local design and construction professionals while we announce the winners of our Juried Award and People’s Choice Award for the ADU Design Competition!

Interested in submitting your idea? Designs are due by October 3rd. Learn more about the competition here.


Demystifying Your Credit Report – Getting Ready to Be Ready

Saturday, October 21, 1-2PM
Hosted by: Carla Lee and Shenandoah Myrick
Location: Virtual event – click below to watch recording


Understand the impact of small changes to improve or create a credit score. Learn about changes in lending practices regarding credit score and the steps you can take to fix mistakes on credit report. Stick around for a gift card giveaway!

This event features the following panel:

Carla Lee – Sr Mortgage Advisor has extensive experience in assisting first-time buyers in becoming purchase ready. Working with them individualized strategies to build or create a credit score, identifying mortgage products that will take them across the finish line to homeownership. She is a Washington State Housing Finance commission trained instructor and has been teaching homeownership classes since the late 80’s. She served on the Board of Directors for Kulshan Community Land Trust, Home Trust of Skagit and the B.I.A.W.C. She believes homeownership changes lives and impacts future generations. Carla has dedicated her career to this truth and thrives on facilitating these dreams to reality.

Shenandoah Myrick – Real Estate Agent & Realtor with over 20 years’ experience serving clients needs for purchasing & selling real estate with superb marketing and planning skills. Her commitment to service is delivered with honed bargaining skills through all phases of the transaction. She has multiple professional designations and continues to level up her education in service to clients and community. Shenandoah holds a certification Eco Broker through North Seattle Community college, Whatcom Association of Realtors & National Association of Realtors, Co-Chairs WCAR Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee, Member of Kulshan Community Land Trust, Whatcom County Alliance, and Low Income Housing Alliance. She is driven to help her clients discover resources available for creating healthier, energy efficient and environmentally friendly homes.

Eviction and Your Options

Saturday, October 21, 4-6PM
Hosted by: Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center
Location: Virtually and at Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center | 206 Prospect Street Bellingham, WA 98225


Please join Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center for an educational session about the eviction process, alternatives, and options. Tenants, landlords, and any interested community members are welcome. Our partner agency, Northwest Justice Project, will provide information about what happens in the eviction process, and landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities. Our expert Housing Stability mediation team will share more about steps you can take to resolve issues before eviction becomes a concern, and how our FREE Housing Stability program can support tenants, landlords, roommates, and neighbors who are experiencing conflict.

Thank you to our Housing Week Sponsors!