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Numerous Programs Offer Rental Assistance — Here’s How To Get It

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Cash-strapped Americans in search of rental assistance have plenty of government programs and funds to tap into, but you need to know where to look if you want to access it.

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More than 360 programs are available across the country that provide money to renters who’ve fallen behind because of the COVID-19 pandemic, CNBC reported on Thursday. The funds, which total more than $45 billion, have been included in the last two major stimulus packages with the aim of helping renters catch up on their payments.

The latest round of funding arrived earlier this month, when the Treasury Department allocated $21.6 billion for rental assistance under President Joe Biden’s rescue package, along with new rules designed to help renters more directly. As Reuters reported, the new guidance lets local rental assistance agencies offer aid directly to renters first, before offering it to landlords. It also requires that funds be offered directly to renters when landlords don’t participate in the programs.

To be eligible for rental assistance, at least one member of your household must qualify for unemployment benefits or attest in writing that they’ve lost income or incurred significant expenses due to COVID-19, CNBC noted. You also need to show a risk of homelessness, such as a past due rent notice. Finally, your 2020 income level can’t exceed 80% of your area’s median income, though states might have different income requirements.

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If you want to apply, here are some helpful tips:

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