PHOENIX - Arizona's larger cities and counties have received help for renters and landlords impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and now people in counties with smaller populations will get assistance.
The Federal Consolidated Appropriation Act, 2021 is authorizing the Department of Economic Security to help.
"We want to make sure renters in Arizona have the resources and support they need," said Governor Doug Ducey. "The rental assistance program will keep families and those in need in their homes and help them get back on their feet as we overcome the effects of the pandemic. We will continue to work closely with community and local government partners to efficiently deliver this relief."
Starting Feb. 23, renters and landlords in the 12 Arizona counties listed below can apply for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program:
- La Paz
- Santa Cruz
"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."
The DES website states eligibility is based on the renter's address and ability to meet the following federal criteria:
- Risk of homelessness, housing instability, or unsafe living conditions demonstrated by an 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)
How to apply
At des.az.gov/ERAP, the portal will be available online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Applicants can apply and check the status of their application on the website.
During the application process, renters will need to provide:
- Copy or lease/rental agreement
- Photo ID
- Electric and/or gas bill
- Disconnection notice (if any)
- Proof of income
- Eviction notice (if applicable)
- Proof of hardship, such as a termination letter
Similar programs in larger cities
According to the DES website, "Several large counties and cities, including Maricopa County, Pima County and Yuma County, are receiving funding directly from the federal government. Those counties plan to launch their own rental assistance programs, which will be separate from this Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) program."
Renters residing in areas outside of the locations listed above can contact the following cities and counties for more information on their rental assistance programs:
- Pima County: tucsonpimaep.com
- Tucson: tucsonpimaep.com
- Yuma County: wacog.com/a-hand-up
- Phoenix: (602) 534-AIDE or phoenix.gov/humanservices/programs/emergency
- Glendale: glendaleaz.com/cap
- Chandler: azcend.org/community-action-program
- Mesa: mesaaz.gov/government/mesa-cares
- Gilbert: gilbertaz.gov/covid19
- Maricopa County (all cities besides Phoenix, Mesa, Glendale, Chandler, Gilbert): maricopa.gov/helpwithbills
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