What is this? The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021, together with the American Rescue Plan Act of 2020, included needed emergency rental assistance for households economically impacted by COVID-19. The package of $24.5 million in funding will be used for administering and delivering emergency rental assistance to be distributed to Onondaga County, which funds are overseen by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Funds were sent to the County to operate emergency rental assistance programs for local landlords and tenants.
Onondaga County Emergency Rental Relief Program –Frequency Asked Questions
Who is eligible?
An “eligible household” is defined as a renter household in which at least one or more individuals meets the following criteria:
i. one or more individuals within the household has qualified for unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced other financial hardship due, directly, or indirectly, to the COVID-19 outbreak; and
ii. one or more individuals within the household can demonstrate a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability; and
iii. the household has a household income at or below 80% of area median income.
Who is not eligible?
- Tenants living outside Onondaga County
- Full-time college student or a household consisting exclusively of college students who are otherwise not employed nor receiving unemployment benefits
- Landlords and tenants who have been found to have committed fraud in this program
What is the at or below 80% of area median income?
The upper-income level to qualify for some assistance is a total household income at or below 80% of the area median income.
What rent can be covered?
- Only rent arrears occurring from March 13, 2020 on
- Only up to 12 months of rental arrears can be paid
- Three months of prospective rental payments will be paid if the rental unit is not affordable
When will the money be available?
- The application site opened on April 19, 2021.
- Add link to website
Who can apply?
- Either the tenant or the landlord can apply but the tenant must be eligible for the landlord to be paid
- The application is available at www.OnGovRentHelp.com (Live on 4/19/2021)
Who can help me apply?
- If you need assistance filling out the application call 211.
- Or call 315-435-2700 (wait for Prompt 3) or email Rental.Assistance@dfa.state.ny.us.
- If you need personal assistance, please call, or stop by the following community based organizations.
Agency information is on www.OnGovRentHelp.com.
Find out if you qualify For Renters
You must meet these conditions to receive funds:
An individual within the household can demonstrate a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability.
An individual within the household has qualified for unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19.
The household has a gross income at or below 80% of the area’s median income. The chart below shows the maximum a tenant can earn per household size to be eligible.
You have an obligation to pay rental arrears and rent.
Find out if you qualify For Landlords Assistance
Don’t wait to apply, limited funds available.
If you are a landlord, encourage or help your tenant apply or apply on their behalf. Both the landlord and tenant need to participate and can independently apply.
If you need assistance with your application, please contact us:
Call: 315-435-2700 select 3 when prompted or dial 211
If your tenant qualifies:
- Payments will be made directly to you.
- You may receive payment for up to twelve months of back rent and utilities and up to three months of prospective rent, depending on your tenant’s eligibility.
What you need to know:
- No debts occurring before March 13, 2020, can be paid with these funds.
- If the original tenant is gone, you may still receive funds if the former tenant is deemed eligible.
- The rental unit you are seeking payment for must not have a health and safety violation.
- Tenants living in the City of Syracuse must have a current Rental Registry.
- While an application is pending review, you waive your right to pursue an eviction or non-possessory money judgment for non-payment of rent.
- By accepting these funds (for back rent or future rent), you agree to waive all interest, penalties, late charges, attorneys’ and/or court fees and costs as a result of the non-payment of rent for the months covered.
Apply Today: www.OnGovRentHelp.com.
Follow us on Facebook: facebook.com/OnondagaCountyDSS Need assistance? Call: 211 or 315-435-2700, select 3 when prompted. Email: Rental.Assistance@dfa.state.ny.us