Failure to respond would only delay the application process. If issues are discovered or brought to our attention, like payments sent to an incorrect address, or payments sent to a landlord who has evicted the tenant, we will take corrective measures, like recapture or other necessary steps.. Approval Notification: The landlord, tenant, and/or utility provider will now be notified automatically that a payment has been approved if an email address is present in the Neighborly system, and the notification will include the payment breakout. Tirloni said the agency doesnt track what portion of those clawed-back funds came from landlords found to have improperly evicted their tenants after receiving assistance or categorize what scenarios would result in recapturing the money. Disclosure: The Texas Apartment Association has been a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. But the tenants are still the ones holding the bag.. Check status periodically. To get that protection, you'll need to attest on a declaration form that you meet a few requirements, such as that you earned less than $99,000 in 2020 or 2021. If a landlord is not paid, the payment will be made directly to the tenant. 0000032455 00000 n Members in the News (MEMBERS ONLY) Since February the state of Texas has paid landlords more than one billion dollars for tenants who can't afford to pay rent. Other organizations That help paying rent in Houston. "To date, Texas Rent Relief has served more than 316,000 households affected by the pandemic. trailer <]/Prev 155979>> startxref 0 %%EOF 48 0 obj <>stream To a question about whether the application website is mobile-friendly, he replied, its mobile-compatible. While many have gone back to work, the unemployment rate remains significantly higher than it was before the pandemic. Perhaps it goes without saying but producing quality journalism isn't cheap. He took the car, which made it difficult for Scott to hunt for work and shelter. stream by Joshua Fechter Lifestyle Is there any communication that were making, saying we messed up, give us a minute and give them a minute so that we can get them the relief that they need, and everyone will be made whole in a few weeks? Bernal asked. As the tenant was evicted from the unit associated with this application, pursuant to program policies, rental arrears are only approved for the time period the tenant was in the unit, the email reads. 0000024288 00000 n The Texas Rent Relief Program will shut down its application portal at 5 p.m. on Friday. endobj According to the TRR portal, the program provided over $2 billion in emergency funds since its launch, helping more than 310,000 Texas families remain stably housed during the pandemic. 0000023877 00000 n The first payment never came because they had a Covid outbreak. For households who applied directly for unpaid or future rent or utilities. This story has been updated to include comments from the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs. TDHCA is using the funds to help Texas renters pay rent and utility bills (including past due rent and utilities). If your landlord breaks their agreement with the Texas Rent Relief program, you may file a complaint with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs. If you are concerned that a community is not in compliance, please contact the TDHCA at 512-475-3800. If you or someone you know still needs help with the rent relief process or pending eviction, you can apply for free legal help at or by calling 1-800-733-8394. 0000088009 00000 n A portion of the funds have been set-aside specifically for households whose landlords have already sued for eviction in their local court. Updated information and a lease for the new unit will be required in the AFR application. 0000001407 00000 n Tenants who are unable to access their existing online application may call the call center for assistance, and documentation related to existing applications may be accepted by postal mail at the following address. Cities and counties that operate local rental assistance programs have $368 million. Assistance continues to grow with an average of $6 million approved per day in the last week, with marked increases seen weekly. To request this information, please contact us toll-free at 833-9TX-RENT (833-989-7368). Residents of McNair, Baytown, Highlands or Chambers County. Both the federal and state government added enforcement provisions when they created the rent relief programs. Last note, I was approved for 12 months back rent pay and 3 months forward, so I am receiving help for 15 months total. <>/Metadata 393 0 R/ViewerPreferences 394 0 R>> Member Editorials (MEMBERS ONLY) Texas Rent Relief approved her for a little over $3,100 about three months worth of rent. 2021 Program Information. I shouldnt have.. We strive to always do better, Tirloni said in an email. For example, the program bars landlords from accepting rent relief payments after they evict a tenant. TRR is processing applications . The Texas Rent Relief (TRR) program provides Texas tenants with financial help with rent and utility bills. But none of that recovered money is helping tenants ousted from their homes, said Julia Ordua, Southeast Texas regional director for Texas Housers, a nonprofit low-income housing advocacy group. The application software issue has been resolved. The states leadership shouldve been prepared to get money out to struggling renters as soon as Congress approved the funding, Rosales said, but instead have focused on their own political interests. from 8 AM - 9 PM ET. 0000006939 00000 n Box 580314 As much as we work to mitigate human error, the potential for application errors exists. Texans shouldnt have to overcome so many bureaucratic and technological challenges just to get help that Congress already funded, Rosales said. TAAHP does not facilitate applications for affordable housing. As of July 26, more than 95,000 households have received assistance from the Texas Rent Relief Program, and almost $600 million in relief has been paid out, according to the TDHCA. Late Fees. The next month, their landlord started the eviction process, even though Scott, 37, had taken the rental office staffs advice and requested help from Texas $2 billion, federally backed rental assistance fund. If the agency finds the allegations are credible, it can refer the cases to the state auditors office, the Treasurys inspector general or local law enforcement agencies. 0000010218 00000 n 2 '.&& ,f1. Visit the TDHCA contact us page for information. Weeks after her eviction, Scott received an email from Texas Rent Relief on Nov. 9 acknowledging that it had initially sent the check to the wrong address. Housing advocates acknowledge the challenges of standing up such a massive program, but Christina Rosales from the group Texas Housers said theres a larger issue at play here: As a state, Texas regularly fails to focus its vast resources on helping people in the midst of a disaster. Please reload the page and try again. Are you looking for rent assistance resources, help with utility bills or reduced rent apartments? By the end of March, only 250 people had actually got help paying for rent out of. Theres no excuse, Rosales said. Maybe the money will be returned to Treasury and the wrong will be righted for the government, Ordua said. Landlords and tenants are particularly put on notice that 18 U.S.C. But the program had fixed that error, the email said. Utilities, Clothing for Children, Employment assistance services. Reporting: On February 15, 2023 Treasury released ERA1 & ERA2 Quarterly Demographic Data for Q1 2021 through Q3 2022; January 2023. If you need help paying rent in Katy, or other financial assistance, reach out to Katy Christian Ministries for more information on their programs. Donate to join or renew today. For others, health issues made going to work unsafe while the pandemic raged out of control. What do I do? The TRR portal will accept new applications starting Tuesday, March 14 at 8 a.m. CT through Tuesday, March 28 at 11:59 p.m. CT, to help eligible households with rent and utility payments. Once the application is submitted, applicants need to remain alert for emails or calls from TDHCAs representatives who could ask for additional information. Around that time, Johnson said she caught COVID-19 and had to miss a month of work. A group of Austin-area lawmakers state Reps. Celia Israel, Sheryl Cole, Vikki Goodwin, Gina Hinojosa, Donna Howard and Eddie Rodriguez alerted TDHCA this week that they have seen alarming calls from constituents whose rent relief money went to the wrong address, and called on the agency to fix the problem. Even now, despite our challenges, were ahead of most states in processing applications and making payments, Wilkinson testified, comparing Texas to other large states like California and Florida. In June, Gates said she lost her job after she missed a week of work because of a medical problem. Some households will still qualify for the program while others will not. Are you a Texas resident looking for affordable housing? I can understand an apartment complex coming at this point in the process and saying, It's time to figure out what's going to happen here or move forward, Musselman said. The ERA program makes funding available to states, U.S. territories, local governments, and tribes to assist households that are unable to pay rent or utilities. You can login to the site as a landlord or as a tenant. Around the time of the eviction, Scott and her husband separated. The program has assisted more than 6,000 households in the state thus far. Info about the decision to end the program and eviction diversion is included as well. Mattingly also heads the Dallas Apartment Association, which represents landlords. The department . To receive help from Katy Christian Ministries you must live in one of the following zip codes: 77084, 77094, 77406, 77423, 77441, 77449, 77450, 77464, 77476, 77485, 77493, 77494 0000000016 00000 n V o l . Events / Networking Opportunities Jeff Williams, a Harris County justice of the peace, had approved the eviction without Scott present in court a typical outcome in eviction cases when tenants dont show up to their hearings. The federal government and the state of Texas both had people like Scott and her family in mind when they hurriedly created a safety net for struggling renters amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Some rent relief programs, including the Texas Rent Relief Program, will make your landlord forgo all unreasonable late fees. The program application now allows these applicants to self-attest to their household income, meeting program requirements instead of uploading income documentation. They told her there was no way to see if they had received it, she said. The Tribune contacted government agencies involved in the program and found that none of them including the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs, which runs the state rent relief program track how often this happens. All those folks acted in good faith on something that we offered them, that theyre by definition entitled toand by some sort of error, theyre not getting the relief that they need, and then the state Supreme Court let its rules around the eviction moratorium lapse, Bernal said. At the moment, Gates is bouncing back and forth between her fathers house and a friends while she appeals her eviction in an attempt to strike it from her record and make it easier for her to find a new place.