The COVID Rent Relief Program will provide eligible households with a one-time rental subsidy that will be sent directly to the household’s landlord. Applicants will not need to repay this assistance. The Covid Rent Relief Program is not first come, first served. Applications will be accepted throughout the two-week application period. HCR will prioritize eligible households with “greatest economic and social need” accounting for income, rent burden, percent of income lost and risk of homelessness.
The rental assistance payment will cover the difference between the household’s rent burden on March 1, 2020 and the increase in rent burden for the months the households is applying for assistance. Households can apply for up to four months in rental assistance. Application for Rental Assistance: Apply By August 6th.
New York State is accepting applications for its Covid Rent Relief Program. The program provides up to four months of rental assistance for eligible households who have lost income due to the pandemic.
- Provides eligible households with a one-time rental subsidy that will be sent directly to the household’s landlord. Applicants will not need to repay this assistance.
- The State will prioritize eligible households with “greatest economic and social need” accounting for income, rent burden, percent of income lost, and risk of homelessness.
- Applicants must have already been paying over 30 percent of their gross (pre-tax) household income toward rent as of March, and then must have lost income during the period of April 1, 2020 to July 31, 2020.
- As of March 1, 2020, household income must be below 80% of the Area Median Income (less than $63,680 for one person, less than $90,960 for a family of four).
Eligible households must meet the following criteria:
- Before March 1, 2020 and at the time of application, household income must have been below 80% of the area median income, adjusted for household size. You can find what the 80% AMI limit for your county and household size is here: www.hcr.ny.gov/eligible-income-limits-80-ami-county
- Before March 1, 2020 and at the time of application, the household must have been paying more than 30% of gross monthly income towards rent. Gross income includes wages as well as any cash grants, child support, social security, unemployment benefits, etc.)
Applicants have less monthly income in any month between April 2020 and July 2020 than they did prior to March 1, 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
FREQUENTLY ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT THE COVID RENT RELIEF PROGRAM
What is the COVID Rent Relief Program?
The New York State Legislature established this program to help households experiencing an increase in their rent burden due to a loss of income during the COVID-19 crisis.
Is rental assistance provided on a first come, first served basis?
The Covid Rent Relief Program is not first come, first served. Applications will be accepted throughout the two-week application period. HCR will prioritize eligible households with “greatest economic and social need” accounting for income, rent burden, percent of income lost and risk of homelessness.
Do I need to register to apply?
Yes. Each applicant will need a NY.Gov account/username in order to use the online application portal. You will be prompted to created an account during the application process. If you need more information about NY.Gov accounts you can visit: https://my.ny.gov/NYgovId/faqs.xhtml
If I received unemployment benefits, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, or Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, does that count towards my income for this program?
Yes, under the statute, income includes unemployment benefits, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (PAC).
Am I eligible to receive this rental assistance if I currently have a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher or reside in public housing? No.
What is the application process for the Coronavirus Rent Relief Program?
When a household applies, they will be asked questions to determine their eligibility.
Residents will also be asked to provide and submit certain information and documents for verification of their eligibility, including:
- household size and composition; and
- household income prior to March 1, 2020 and current household income.
If a household is determined to be eligible, they will be asked to submit documentation to certify their eligibility.
Once that information has been verified and processed, a one-time payment will be sent directly to the applicant’s landlord.
HCR anticipates sending payments to landlords by the end of the summer.
What documents do I need to provide?
- Copy of a lease or other proof of monthly rental amount;
- Proof of the household’s gross income prior to March 1, 2020 and at present. This includes, but is not limited to paystubs, employer letters, and federal/state tax returns.
Do I need to continue to pay my rent? Yes
I have already paid my rent in full for one or more of the months in the coverage period. Am I still able to receive assistance from the COVID Rent Relief Program? Yes
If I don’t have a lease but am a month-to-month tenant am I still eligible to receive assistance? Yes
Can I apply for the COVID Rent Relief Program if I live with roommates?
Yes, residents may apply for rental assistance if they live with one or more roommates, but they can only apply for assistance for the portion of the home and rent payment for which they are personally responsible on a monthly basis.