Emergency Rent Assistance

The New York State Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) will provide significant economic relief to help low and moderate-income households at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability by providing rental arrears, temporary rental assistance and utility arrears assistance.

Seven communities that received funding for emergency rental assistance directly from the federal government opted to administer their own programs. Residents of City of Rochester and Monroe County, the City of YonkersOnondaga County and the towns of HempsteadIslip and Oyster Bay must apply with their local programs for emergency rental assistance and are ineligible for assistance from the state-administered Emergency Rental Assistance Program.

Program open as of June 1, 2021. Applications are now being accepted.

Eligibility

New York residents are eligible for ERAP if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • Household gross income is at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI). These income limits differ by county and household size. A household may qualify based on current income or calendar year 2020 income that is at or below 80 percent AMI.
  • On or after March 13, 2020, a member of the household received unemployment benefits or experienced a reduction in income, incurred significant costs or experienced financial hardship, directly or indirectly, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The applicant is obligated to pay rent at their primary residence and has rental arrears (rent overdue) at their current residence for rent owed on or after March 13, 2020.
  • The household must be at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability, which can be demonstrated by having rental arrears owed on or after March 13, 2020.

There are no immigration status requirements to qualify for the program.

NOTE: Households eligible for rental arrears may also be eligible for help paying utility arrears at the same rental unit.

Renters will need to provide:

Documents you will need to apply when the program is open:

  • Personal identification for all household members. Acceptable forms of identification include: A photo ID, driver license or non-driver government-issued ID, passport, EBT/Benefits Issuance Card, birth or baptismal certificate, school registration.
  • Social Security number of any household members who have been issued one. Individuals do not need to have a lawful immigration status to qualify for the program.
  • Proof of rental amount, signed lease, even if expired. If no lease is available then proof can be shown through a rent receipt, canceled check or money order. If no documentation is available, landlord attestation will be accepted.
  • Proof of residency and occupancy – Signed lease, rent receipt, utility bill, school records, bank statement, postal mail with name of applicant, insurance bill, or driver license. Proof should be current.
  • Proof of Income to document income eligibility:
    • Documents demonstrating monthly income for the prior month, such as pay stubs, bank account deposit verification, unemployment benefits letter, or other proof; OR
    • Documents demonstrating annual income for 2020, such as a W-2 tax form from an employer, an annual statement of earnings, or a copy of a completed income tax return, such as a 1040, 1040EZ, 1099 tax form, or other evidence of 2020 annual income.
    • Self-attestation of income is permitted in certain circumstances where no documentation is available such as certain self-employment.
  • Copy of gas or electric utility bill, if applying for help paying for utility arrears at the same rental unit.

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