The mission of Shelter Island Housing Options, Inc. is to help meet the need for affordable, appropriate and adequate housing for resident individuals and families who were born on Shelter island or who have choosen to live and work here to raise their families, and those who have chosen to live out their retirement years here.

Patricia Shillingburg

PO Box 3032
Shelter Island Heights, NY 11965

We seek to strengthen the fabric of the Island community by addressing the need for housing options. Our organization is supported by private donations and gifts solicited from residents and friends of the Island community. Our efforts will be focused on four areas:

Rentals: Some Shelter Island homeowners have illegal apartments and rental units. Some are un-inspected and may be substandard. These rental units will be either made legal and regulated, or vacated. Shelter Island Housing Options, Inc. will work with other groups to facilitate the changes, including necessary up-grades needed to maintain the availability of adequate and safe rental housing.

Inventory: Securing for qualifying individuals and families, houses, lots, and parcels by purchase and/or gift, or a combnation of both, that are suitable for affordable and accessible housing, including, if possible, cluster or congregate housing. A not-for profit status, for which Shelter Island Housing Options, Inc. is applying, will be necessary for this area to function in receiving donated properties and to convey properties to qualifying persons.

Finances: Gaining commitments for financial resources from lending institutions, charitable trusts, and other entities and individuals for mortgages and down-payment assistance. An endowment fund may be set up for an emergency grant/loan program to be used by qualifying persons for capital expenditures such as major emergency repairs, handicap accessibility, and the like.

Development: Facilitating the rehabilitation of existing housing stock for qualifying individuals and families, using a volunteer talent bank (volunteers with construction, legal, financial and other skills) employed with construction materials supplied by donations to a Materials Clearing House. Working with local government, the Peconic Land Trust, Habitate for Humanity, interested charitable trusts, and other organizations, we will help meet the community's need for affordable and appropriate housing for all Shelter Island residents.

Although there is a known need, the extent is not known. Therefore, two surveys are being conducted in May 2000. The first is a survey of the year-round population to determine need for decent housing. The other is a survey of auxiliary buildings on the Island that are currently or could be used for rental properties to determine if legal and up to standards.

Important Literature on the Subject:

The Not So Rich Get a Hand on Housing in Westchester,New York Times, Monday, April 3, 2000, page B1
Buying Modest Homes in Extravagant Times,New York Times, Saturday, April 22, 2000  (Editorial Page)
Hard Choices for a Graying Island, New York Times,Sunday, April 23, 2000, page 29