EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM IS NOW LIVE!
The Town of Huntington Agency was awarded $5.9 million dollars for an Emergency Rental Assistance Program from the United States Department of Treasury as part of the CARES ACT. The Town has Chosen to partner with the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) to administer the application process of this program. This program will provide significant economic relief to help low to moderate income households at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability due to the COVID-19 pandemic, by providing rental arrears, temporary rental assistance and utility arrears assistance.
Households approved for this program may receive:
- Up to 12 months of rental arrears payments for rent accrued on or after March 13th 2020.
- Up to 3 months of additional rental assistance if the household is expected to spend 30 percent or more of their gross monthly income to pay rent.
- Up to 12 months of electric or gas utility arrears payments for arrears that have accrued on or after march 13, 2020.
Payments will be made directly to the landlord/property owner and utility company on behalf of the tenant. Tenant applicants will be notified of the amounts paid on their behalf. If a landlord is difficult to locate or does not otherwise provide information needed to complete the application, funds will be held for up to 180 days to allow sufficient time to locate the landlord and collect required information as well as to provide tenant protections and maximize landlord participation.
Renter Applicants will need to provide:
- Personal identification for all household members. Acceptable forms of identification include: A photo ID, driver license or non-driver government-issued ID, passport, EBT/Benefits Issuance Card, birth or baptismal certificate, school registration.
- Social Security number of any household members who have been issued one. Individuals do not need to have a lawful immigration status to qualify for the program.
- Proof of rental amount, signed lease, even if expired. If no lease is available then proof can be shown through a rent receipt, canceled check or money order. If no documentation is available, landlord attestation will be accepted.
- Proof of residency and occupancy – Signed lease, rent receipt, utility bill, school records, bank statement, postal mail with name of applicant, insurance bill, or driver license. Proof should be current.
- Documents demonstrating monthly income for the prior month, such as pay stubs, bank account deposit verification, unemployment benefits letter, or other proof; or;
- Documents demonstrating annual income for 2020, such as a W-2 tax form from an employer, an annual statement of earnings, or a copy of a completed income tax return, such as a 1040, 1040EZ, 1099 tax form, or other evidence of 2020 annual income.
**Self-attestation of income is permitted in certain circumstances where no documentation is available such as certain self-employment.
- Copy of gas or electric utility bill, if applying for help paying for utility arrears at the same rental unit.
Applicants will be asked to attest that on or after March 13, 2020, a member of the household received unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs or experienced other financial hardship, directly or indirectly, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The applicant will need to sign the application form and associated certifications agreeing that the information provided in the application is accurate.
Landlord/property owner Applicants will need to provide:
- Completed W-9 tax form.
- Executed lease with tenant applicant, or if there is no written lease, a cancelled check, evidence of funds transfer or other documentation of the last full monthly rent payment.
- Documentation of rent due from tenant (e.g. ledger, etc.) or attestation on application.
- Banking information to receive direct deposit payment.
The property owner or an authorized property management company will be required to sign the application form and associated certifications agreeing that the information provided, including the amount of rental arrears owed, is accurate and does not duplicate a payment received from another program.
The property owner or authorized property Management Company must also agree to the following terms as a condition of accepting rental arrears payments:
- The ERAP payment satisfies the tenant’s full rental obligations for the time period covered by the payment.
- Waive any late fees due on any rental arrears covered by the ERAP payment.
- Not increase the monthly rental amount above the monthly amount due at the time of application for ERAP assistance for months for which rental assistance is received and for one year from receipt of the ERAP payment.
- Not evict the household on behalf of whom the ERAP payment is made for reason of expired lease or holdover tenancy for one year from the receipt of the ERAP payment. An exception to this requirement shall be made if the dwelling unit contains four or fewer units and the property owner or owner’s immediate family members intend to immediately occupy the unit for use as a primary residence.
The program is now available online and can be found at www.otda.ny.gov/erap
Direct link To OTDA application: https://otda.ny.gov/programs/emergency-rental-assistance/
If you need assistance with your application, Housing Help Inc. will be working with the Town of Huntington on the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. They will be available Monday through Friday 10 am to 5pm to provide application assistance to the residents and landlords of Huntington. The office will be located at: 95 B Broadway Greenlawn, NY 11740.
You can contact Housing Help at 631-754-0373 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please call the Huntington Community Development Agency at (631)351-2881 should you have any questions.