Starting a housing search

Craigslist housing search

Suggestions for starting your search for safer housing:

EI Safer Housing Facebook Group
Post a “HOUSING WANTED: CITY, STATE” listing on this popular Facebook safe housing group.

MCS Friends Housing Listings
Post a free “seeking housing” listing on the MCS Friends website.

Healthy Home Services
Jennifer will help you look for safe housing to buy or rent. Services include: Internet research; follow up on any promising options using your specific criteria list; working as an intermediary with agents; any additional research related to the non-toxic housing environment. She is also available as a personal assistant to travel nationwide and check out properties for you. For questions and information on qualifications and fees, call Jennifer at (505) 471-5133.

MCS-Safe Shelter yahoogroup
Place an ad on this group, and browse others’ ads.

New Horizons The last two pages of this newsletter put out by the New Horizons Independent Living Center contain MCS-safe housing ads for rentals and sales.

Our Toxic Times
Great national classifieds section with lots of ads for EI homes and trailers. You’ll need to purchase an annual membership to CIIN to receive this free newsletter.

Safer Travel Directory
Green lodging, and housing rentals and sales.

Try searching Craigslist for the areas you are interested in. Try searching for terms like “chemical,” “chemically,” “allergies,” “environmental,” “sensitive,” “sensitivity,” “non-toxic,” etc. If you separate all the terms you want to search with a vertical slash, you can search them all at once (chemical | chemically | allergies | environmental | sensitive | sensitivity | non-toxic). Make sure you check different versions of a word, such as chemical and chemically, or sensitive and sensitivity. You’ll get a different sent of ads for each slightly different term. Here are some ads I found doing this. Not sure how MCS-safe though—that would be for you to determine through conversations and/or a visit.

Remember: Just because someone says they’re chemically sensitive in an ad, does not mean their home will be safe for you. We all have different sensitivities and can tolerate different products. One person’s baking soda-cleaned kitchen is another’s nightmare. “Natural” and “organic” herbal products can shut someone’s airway down in a second. Make sure you ask what cleaning and personal care products they use before scheduling a visit.

Important: Be savvy when visiting ads found on Craigslist. There is an element of risk involved above and beyond the environmental safety issues. Please read Craiglist’s page on personal safety.

Albuquergue, NM
$350 Green living in the Sandia Mountains (Cedar Crest, NM)
Upstairs room for rent: a medium size one for $350.00 + . Pergo, brick & tile floors, all electric house with woodstove backup heat. Due to allergies, you must be willing to be fragrance-free and have no indoor furry pets.

Denver, CO
Low allergen, organic food, assisted living home
For partially limited elderly and/or disabled persons benefiting from services for preparation of meals and snacks, all cleaning, all grocery shopping and prescription or supplement pickup, possible assistance with some other errands, assistance with medications, and cheerful emotional support and interaction in a chemical-free home environment.

Flagstaff, AZ
$750 1 bedroom
This is an environmentally clean home, no VOC paints, laminate wooden floors, and new tile in the full bathroom and entry way. NO SMOKING on the property, no animals due to allergies.

Monterey, CA
2950 3 bdr
Country folks only need apply. Eco-minded and chemical free homestead for raising vegetables and farm animals. Updated 1960’s ranch style house – 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms with room for a grandmother.

You should also place ads in cities you want to live…here is one example of someone else looking for a chemical free place:

Seeking eco, fragrance free housing, possible work trade
I have a secure income and excellent references. I am honest, clean, dependable, and take care of properties; I pay rent on time. Seeking an environmentally safe housing unit, with no toxic chemicals, fragrances, pesticides or herbicides used in or around the property, or used by close neighbors. Seeking individual unit or shared housing in a chemical free, mold-free environment due to chemical sensitivities. (Shared unit must have private bath and fragrance free, chemical free laundry (use of environmentally safe products only, laundry and personal care). Must have “Wired” DSL or Hi-Speed cable internet capabilities (need indoor wireless-free zone, including no cell phones used inside). I do not have pets. Temporary or longer term okay. With gratitude!
Vacation rentals, private rooms, and sublets by the night. Not geared to MCS but you may find chemical free or eco-minded rooms using the search feature.

Queer-friendly resources
Sick and Disabled Queers is a private group on Facebook where you can network with other queers, many of whom are chemically sensitive.
Transgender Couchsurfing Network Search your area for MCS-safe(r) opportunities. Click on “need a couch posts.” You might find private rooms and, occasionally, folks are open to possible long term arrangements.

Specific to Southwest, where a lot of EIs tend to relocate to due to high desert climate
Arizona Environmental Health Bulletin (AEHB)
Sign up for this wonderful free newsletter with housing ads for those in the Southwest.

EI Communities in AZ
Article summarizing pros and cons of various towns where EIs live in Arizona.

top photo: © 2009 Julie Genser | Popular online housing classifieds like can be a good source for safer rentals.