Oregon emergency rental assistance portal now open

SALEM, Ore. — Oregon’s emergency rental assistance portal is now online.

With the pandemic came financial hardship for many individuals and families. Some of them had trouble coming up with enough money to pay rent. But now, the state has stepped in and made $204 million available to qualified renters who are at risk of homelessness or housing instability.

On Wednesday, May 19, the Oregon Emergency Rental Assistance Program (OERAP) started accepting applications for funding to pay rent, rent arrears, future rent, and certain home utility costs.

“For the first time, renters can access rental assistance through a statewide, centralized application portal,” says Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) Executive Director Margaret Salazar. “Together with our community-based partners, we are prioritizing resources toward our most vulnerable households to help keep Oregonians in their homes during these challenging times.”

Every renter that applies will have their application reviewed, and relief resources will be distributed to those who meet the following federal eligibility requirements:

  • have income less than 80% of Area Median Income (AMI);
  • have an individual in the household who has qualified for unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced other financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic;
  • demonstrate a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability due to past-due rent or utilities.

Federal guidance requires that grantees prioritize households with incomes less than 50% AMI and households with one or more members that have been unemployed for at least 90 days.

To find out additional information about criteria or to apply to the OERAP program visit OregonRentalAssistance.org. Oregonians in need of assistance can contact their local Community Action Agency or local program administrator or contact http://211info.org or call 2-1-1.

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