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Posted on: February 18, 2021

Emergency rental assistance available beginning Feb. 23, 2021

DES

Emergency Rental Assistance Program

Keeping renters safe and in their homes 

 

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 authorized financial rent and utility relief for Arizona renters and landlords to be administered at the state and local level. Beginning on Tuesday, February 23, 2021, renters and landlords in the twelve Arizona counties listed below will be able to apply for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) using the online ERAP portal. Applications will be accepted through the program’s expiration on December 31, 2021 or until funding is exhausted.

Program Detail

 

Eligibility

Rental assistance is available to both landlords and renters. While both may apply for assistance, eligibility is based on the renter’s address and ability to meet the following federal criteria:

  • The renter has a risk of homelessness, housing instability, or unsafe living conditions demonstrated by the following:
  • Eviction notice
  • Utility shutoff notice
  • Past due rent notice
  • Past due utility notice
  • Any other evidence of unsafe or unhealthy living conditions or housing instability
  • The renter or member of the renter’s household is eligible for unemployment insurance benefits or has experienced a financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • The renter’s household income is less than or equal to 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI)


 

DES Emergency Rental Assistance Program - Maximum Household Income Eligible

County

Household Size (persons)

8 or more

Yavapai 

  37,000

  42,300

  47,600

  52,867

  57,100

  61,333

  65,567

  69,800

 

 

Assistance priority will be given to renters with household incomes under 50% AMI and to those who have been unemployed 90 days or longer. 

 

How to Apply

Applicants are encouraged to apply safely and conveniently from their own homes using the ERAP online portal, which will be available February 23, 2021. Applicants unable to apply online may apply by phone using the ERAP hotline or by submitting a paper application to any DES local office across the state. 

 

During their application, renters will need to provide a copy of lease/rental agreement, photo ID, electricity and/or gas bill, disconnection notice (if any), proof of income, eviction notice (if applicable) and proof of hardship, such as a termination letter.

 

How much can eligible applicants expect to receive in assistance?

DES will authorize an eligible household’s need up to $3,500 per month for combined rent and utility assistance. Arrears balances dating back to March 2020 will be given priority. Future assistance will be authorized in three-month increments. Assistance is available for a maximum of 15 months. 

 

One-time assistance of up to $500 is available to landlords for court and attorney-related costs associated with each housing unit or renter.

 

How will funds be disbursed?

Assistance payments will be issued via ACH transfer to the landlord and/or utility service provider. Utility assistance will be disbursed in the same manner.

 

Appeals

Applicants can appeal adverse actions by submitting an ERAP Appeal Form or written request within 60 calendar days from the date of decision or adverse action. More information regarding this process is available on the ERAP online portal.

 

Fraud Safeguards

DES will mitigate fraud by verifying the identities of prospective renter applicants prior to the submission of an application using the identity verification service, ID.me. During the application process, renters will receive notice through their selected method of communication with a unique link and instructions on how to use ID.me. If a renter is unable to utilize the ID.me service, they can verify their identity by calling the ERAP hotline or by submitting a paper application with a photo identification.

 

Removal Prevention

By agreeing to receive rental assistance funds, the landlord agrees that the renter has not moved, been removed, and is still residing on the property that relates to the rental assistance payment. The landlord further agrees not to remove the renter for at least 30 days following the payment.


 

Renters and landlords can apply online beginning February 23, 2021 at des.az.gov/ERAP

 

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