By: Tom Kopstein, Legal Intern, Volunteer Lawyers Program
The CDC Eviction Moratorium ends July 31, 2021, but millions of dollars in rental and utility assistance funds, which can cover back rent, are still available to Arizonans until the end of 2021.
($23 Million in rental assistance available in Tucson and Pima County)
(Pinal County renters still eligible for COVID aid)
It is vital for eligible tenants immediately to prevent evictions or utilities from being cut off because applications can take several weeks to be approved. Also, the CDC moratorium requires tenants to show that they have applied for assistance. Keep reading to learn more about Arizona’s rental assistance program.
How it Works:
Tenants and Landlords can apply for assistance through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP). An eligible household may receive up to $3,500 per month for both rent and utility assistance, depending on their need. Past-due balances dating back to March 2020 will be given priority. Future assistance will be allowed 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.
Assistance payments will be given directly to landlords and/or utility service providers.
How to Apply:
Applicants can apply safely from their own homes using the ERAP online portal. (https://era.azdes.gov/) Applicants unable to apply online may apply by phone through the ERAP hotline at 1-833-912-0878.
Either a landlord or a tenant can initiate an application, but both will need to participate in the application process.
- If a tenant initiates an application, the tenant will provide the landlord’s email address and the landlord will receive an email notification requesting they register or login to finish the application.
- If a landlord wishes to initiate the application, the landlord will register in the portal. Once the registration is approved, the landlord can initiate an application and provide the tenant’s contact information. The tenant will receive an email to finish the application. Eligibility is based upon the tenant’s income and COVID-19 related hardship.
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 or explanation of their hardship, such as a termination letter.
If you are denied, you can appeal by submitting an ERAP Appeal Form or written request within 60 calendar days from the date of the decision. You can find more information on the ERAP online portal.
Informational video on Emergency Rental Assistance Program: https://vimeo.com/521974898
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 rules:
- 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 has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The renter’s household income is less than or equal to 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI). (See Chart Below)
The 12 counties that are eligible for assistance through DES are: Apache, Graham, Navajo, Cochise, Greenlee, Pinal, Coconino, La Paz, Santa Cruz, Gila, Mohave, and Yavapai.
Additional County and City Programs
Some large counties and cities, including Maricopa County, Pima County and Yuma County, are getting funding from the federal government. Those counties will have their own rental assistance programs separate from the DES program. Renters living in cities and counties other than those listed above should contact their local area for similar programs as listed below:
|County or City||Website Address||Phone Number||Anticipated Launch Date|
|Pima County||https://tucsonpimaep.com/||Available Now|
|Yuma County||https://www.wacog.com/ycerap/||(928) 782-1886
|Phoenix||City of Phoenix Human Services Department
https://www.phoenix.gov/RentHelp(link is external)Wildfire
|Central Intake Line
(602) 534-2433(602) 604-0640
*all cities besides Phoenix, Mesa, Glendale, Chandler, Gilbert
For help finding the agency that may be able to assist you, please use this search tool(link is external).
Frequently Asked Questions for Landlords: https://des.az.gov/services/basic-needs/shelter-housing/emergency-rental-assistance/landlords-faqs
Frequently Asked Questions for Renters: https://des.az.gov/services/basic-needs/shelter-housing/emergency-rental-assistance/renters-faqs
For questions or comments about the blog, please contact us at: Connections@sazlegalaid.org
Information in This Article From: https://des.az.gov/ERAP