Struggling to pay rent? Tenants urged to tap into COVID-19-tied federal aid

Written by MLHA Team

August 19, 2021

Millions of dollars still are available to help El Paso-area tenants struggling to pay their rent due to pandemic-related economic problems.

“During this very critical period as the delta variant spreads, we cannot allow families to be out on the streets. And also, we cannot allow landlords to also be put at risk and not receive the rents that they also depend on to pay their mortgages,” U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar, D-El Paso, said at a Friday news conference.

Escobar, an official overseeing the federally funded EP Rent Help Program and a lawyer with an organization that helps people facing evictions, held the news conference to get the word out that plenty of federal rent help is available.

Both tenants and landlords can tap into the money, they said.

Subscriber exclusive:El Paso program has millions of dollars in COVID-tied rent aid for struggling tenants

Two programs have federal money available to help tenants struggling to pay rent due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Landlords also can tap into the money:

EP Rent Help: $5.3 million available, with about half available to city residents and half for county residents. 

Apply online at eprenthelp.org, or call 877-594-7276.

Texas Rent Relief Program: $632 million available statewide now and another $1 billion later.

Apply online at texasrentrelief.com, or call 833-989-7368.

Both programs require an annual income of 80% or lower of area median income, ranging from $34,100 annually for a single person to $48,700 for a family of four.

Tenants’ ability to pay rent must have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Payments of up to 12 months past-due rent and up to three months future rent are available.

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