San Diego County to start accepting applications for rent, utility aid

Bill envelope
Posted at 4:27 PM, Feb 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-23 19:27:05-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Starting next month, San Diego County residents can begin applying for rental and utility assistance from the county's emergency fund.

Residents can apply starting March 2 for help from the county's Emergency Rental Assistance Program to help lessen the burden of housing costs. The program is funded by more than $100 million in state and federal monies to provide aid to eligible people behind on their rent or utility payments from April 2020 to March 2021.

To be eligible, households must be renting and have experienced a financial hardship directly or indirectly — including a reduction in household income, incurring significant costs, or experiencing other financial hardship — related to COVID-19, or have qualified for unemployment during the pandemic.

Utilities covered include electricity, gas, water and sewer, trash, and other energy costs not included in rent. The amount of back rent covered will depend on whether a landlord agrees to participate in the program. Landlords can also apply on behalf of tenants.

Households must not earn more than 80% area median income to qualify and be either at risk of homelessness or facing housing instability.

Residents who apply will be able to check their application status online.

The emergency fund will aid residents in the county, except in San Diego and Chula Vista. Residents of those cities can apply for assistance here.