Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Help Needed - Housing Resources

Hello, very new to all of this. I have a lot to say, so bear with me…

I need help because I am just lost… My aunt has sever SZ and I am going to be taking over her care. My grandmother has overseen her care up to this point, but her own health is suffering and she has not been able to attend to my aunt properly.
Currently, she is living in a property owned by my grandmother. The property is on the verge of needing to be condemned due to damage cause by my aunt and she has neighbors who are constantly trying to get her evicted.
My initial plan is to try and make the property habitable and be more firm to discourage damages to the property and it’s assets. Unfortunately, she has grown accustomed to my grandma’s way of dealing with things which has been quite absent and enabling for her more manipulative behaviors. For context, she asked for a new air conditioner and, when she was told no, she broke the air conditioner and it was replace by my grandmother with no regard for her own accountability as an independently living adult under a tenant agreement.
The likelihood that she will be allowed to live independently much longer is very low and I am worried. In the case that she is no longer able to live there I have nowhere for her to go. She has been evicted from every live-in program for mental illness in my area for being too sever and the local crisis center says she is not sever enough, which in Nebraska means she isn’t currently harming someone or herself.

The big questions:

Where do you find resources on housing for those with severe mental illness?
How does that work across state lines if she is living off of government assistance? (There are no facilities in NE)
Any tips/resources on making a house more safe/sabotage proof? (essentially baby proofing for SZ)

Sorry for what you are going through. Some suggestions:

Try calling the local hospital and asking to speak with a social worker. Also check with your local NAMI. They have helped me so much.


@Aubrey…You are wonderful to step in this situation and you seem to have made a good assessment of the situation. Does your aunt take any medication for this illness at all? Does she see a doctor?

Housing is a major problem area for persons with mental illness, in general. I suggest you list the short term and long term pros and cons of various options, but here are some thoughts:

  1. First, I highly suggest you get connected with a local NAMI Family Support Group. (
  2. Learn all you can about schizophrenia. There are a number of good books. Resources are on the NAMI website.
  3. Read the book “I Am Not Sick; I Don’t Need Help”. This book introduces us to a communication method called LEAP that may be our only real hope to help our loved ones who are not voluntarily seeking the help they need. I like this page for an introduction:

THEN…AFTER you have done the things above…

You could fix up the property without going to extremes, given her history of destruction. Are there other advantages (or disadvantages) of keeping this property? This will best have potential to be helpful IF you have a good relationship with your aunt (See #3 above re: LEAP)

There is not much of anything that coordinates across state lines. Getting connected with a NAMI Family Support Group, and especially taking a NAMI Family to Family Class (all programs are provided at no cost), is one of the best things I ever did. Many NAMI programs are being offered on a virtual basis at this time.

You’re right. It is hard to get someone in patient help in most states because they aren’t of harm to their self or to others. But don’t give up on that. There may be a moment when it is the right time to call your and ask for a (CIT) Crisis Intervention Team, depending on what is offered in your state. There is SO much more to be learned than I can post here, but you are off to a good start! Best wishes!!