The Treasury Department recently announced that state and local governments had set a new record for rental assistance, providing 665,000 renters and landlords — in Nov. 2021 — with funding through the Department of the Treasury’s Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs. This brings the total number of payments disbursed by the ERA programs to more than 3.1 million instances.
The $2.9 billion in ERA money in Nov. 2021 represents “the largest amount of assistance paid to eligible households and the largest number of payments made in any month since the programs were created,” per the Treasury Department. The department also stated that, due to the Biden administration’s efforts to prevent evictions, filings for eviction remain “well below pre-pandemic levels.”
Data from Princeton’s Eviction Lab details that in the four full months since the end of the eviction moratorium in August, eviction filings have remained below 60 percent of historical levels.
Said relief programs have been met with some degree of controversy. Over the summer, the program came under criticism as many landlords claimed that the process held too many administrative hurdles. Renters also complained of lengthy administrative processes getting in the way of receiving money they were ostensibly eligible to claim.
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In its statement, the Treasury states that the department’s efforts to provide grantees with additional flexibility has helped speed up the pace at which these funds are reaching renters in need. November was the third straight month of over $2.8 billion in ERA spending and over 500,000 payments were made under the auspices of these relief programs.
If you have not taken advantage of the rental assistance yet and are in need, there is still time. The Treasury Department has now begun informing grantees about the process for requesting new funding in the second round of ERA 1 reallocations. The deadline for submitting a request for the second round of reallocated funds is Jan. 21, 2022. The process for reallocating ERA 2 funds will not begin until March 31, 2022 — and the Treasury will publish separate guidance for said reallocation closer to that time.
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