Waukesha County launching emergency rental assistance program

WAUKESHA COUNTY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Waukesha County, in partnership with Community Advocates, Inc., is launching an Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) to help people experiencing financial hardship to stay in their homes because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program, which will provide $12 million in direct rental and utility costs, is now accepting applications.

CLICK HERE to apply. 

For individuals who qualify, ERAP pays for:

  • Up to three months of rent at a time
  • Up to twelve months of rent in arrears (back-rent) occurring after March 13, 2020.
  • Cost of electricity and other home energy costs.
  • Cost of utilities in arrears (back-utilities) occurring after March 13, 2020.

ERAP payments are made directly to the landlord or utility company, NOT to the renter. Payments are made to the landlord or utility provider within about 10 days.

Waukesha County residents may qualify for help with rent or utilities who:

  • Qualify for unemployment insurance benefits; or have experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19.
  • Are at risk of becoming homeless; or are experiencing housing instability.
  • Have a household income at or below 80% of the median in Waukesha County. Unemployment benefits count as household income.
  • Are 18 years old or older.
  • Are a Wisconsin resident that is named on a current residential rental lease.
  • Receive a federal housing subsidy, such as a Housing Choice Voucher, Public Housing, Project-Based Rental Assistance or Tenant-Based Rental Assistance – and their rent is NOT adjusted as income changes.

Individuals are not eligible if:

  • They want reimbursement for mortgage payments. Only rental housing costs are covered.
  • They already receive additional rent or utility assistance. ERAP cannot be used to cover expenses that are already being subsidized.
  • Their rent is adjusted as their income changes and they receive a federal housing subsidy, such as a Housing Choice Voucher, Public Housing, Project-Based Rental Assistance or Tenant-Based Rental Assistance.

Residents who qualify for ERAP may also receive additional housing security. Landlords who agree to accept ERAP rent payments must agree to take no action to evict individuals for late or past due rent during the coronavirus eviction moratorium issued by the federal Centers of Disease Control (CDC).

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