COVID-19 Rent Relief Now Available

Help is on the way for tenants struggling to pay rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Board of Supervisors has provided $100 million in federal CARES Act funds to create a COVID-19 Rent Relief program, operated by the Los Angeles County Development Authority (LACDA).

From August 17 to August 31, LACDA will accept applications from residents throughout the County of Los Angeles, except in the City of Los Angeles, which received its own $100 million in CARES Act funds for its residents. Applicants can either call 211 or go to the website https://211la.org/lacounty/rentrelief.

As many as 9,000 households can benefit from the emergency rental assistance, with priority given to those most at risk of being displaced or becoming homeless. Half of the funds will be geared toward tenants who receive half or less than half of median income.

More information is available at rentrelief.lacda.org.

“This unrelenting pandemic is hitting low-income renters and mon-and-pop property owners particularly hard,” Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said. “By some estimates, up to 20 percent of families who have lost a job in LA County could end up homeless. They’re in critical need of financial help now to keep a roof over their heads. The immediate infusion of this $100 million investment will go a long way towards keeping thousands of Angelenos housed. It’s the massive down payment we need to stabilize the housing market.”

“The Countywide Rent Relief program created by the Board of Supervisors will address the worsened condition from which many lower income households have suffered due to the pandemic,” said LACDA Acting Executive Director Emilio Salas. “While we recognize the demand is far greater than the funding available, this robust assistance will provide housing stability for some of our most vulnerable households, especially those in higher need areas.”

In addition to the $100 million rent relief program, Los Angeles County is also allocating $10 million to an Eviction Defense Program, administered by the Department of Business and Consumer Affairs (DCBA) with community partners. This will include legal representation for eligible tenants, eviction help centers in courthouses, and short-term rental assistance. For more information, call DCBA at (833) 223-RENT (7368) or go to https://dcba.lacounty.gov/rentstabilization/

The US Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, provides emergency rental assistance grants to income-eligible households who have suffered a job loss, furlough, or reduction in hours or pay as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is the second installment of CARES Act Funds for rent relief.  The first installment was in May, and included $1 million to provide tenants with up to $1,000 each towards their monthly rent for up to three months. Another $800,000 was set aside to help mom-and-pop property owners pay the mortgage on their rental properties