County opens up Covid-19 rent assistance applications

NEW HANOVER COUNTY — New Hanover County has opened its Covid-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program to residents at risk of losing their housing because of the pandemic.

Earlier this month, New Hanover County accepted $7.7 million appropriated through the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, the second Covid-19 relief package approved by Congress signed into law before the new year.

RELATED: Federal Covid-19 bill brings $7.7 million in local rent assistance funding

Funding is available to households or individuals that meet each of the following three criteria:

  • A household with one or more individuals qualified for unemployment has a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs or experienced financial hardship due to the pandemic. Applicants can prove this hardship by showing: job loss or furlough, a reduction in work hours, Covid-19 illness of themselves or an immediate family member, loss of schooling or daycare resulting in childcare needs.
  • A household with one or more individuals that demonstrate a risk of housing instability or homelessness
  • A household with an income at or below 80% of the area median income ($62,800 for a family of four). Priority will be given to applicants with 50% of the area median income ($39,250 for a family of four).

The program will help cover the cost of outstanding utility bills and rent payments. If you think you may be eligible, you can apply online or over the phone by calling 910-798-3560.

Citizenship is not a requirement.

Once you submit your application, the county may require documentation, including: 30 days’ pay stubs, check stubs, tax returns, an employer statement, copy of lease agreement, proof of residency, ID, late notice or documentation from landlord.

If approved, housholds may receive up to 12 months of assistance. Payments are made directly to landlords or utility provider.

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