COVID-19 has impacted the financial security of Minnesotans in a variety of ways, from job loss or reduced hours, to time away from work due to illness, or to care for children who are at home due to school/childcare closures; leading many families and individuals in our community to experience a housing crisis.
On Tuesday, July 14, 2020, Governor Walz announced that up to $100 million of funding will be allocated from the state’s Covid-19 Relief Fund to create a new housing assistance program to help prevent evictions, prevent homelessness, and maintain housing stability of individuals and households impacted by COVID-19. The $100 million is anticipated to be funded with federal dollars through the Coronavirus Relief Fund, which was authorized by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
THE COVID-19 HOUSING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM IS NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS
To apply for CHAP funds:
- Apply for CHAP assistance here https://www.housinghelpmn.org/
- Call 2-1-1 or 651-291-0211 and press 2
- Text “MNRENT” to 898-211
- Multilingual applications available for Hmong, Spanish and Somali
Visit Minnesota Housing for FAQs, to see if you are eligible to apply for the program, and to learn more about how the program works.
What is the COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program?
The COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program provides housing assistance payments to help prevent eviction, prevent homelessness, and maintain housing stability for eligible renters and homeowners. Local administrators will review applications from individuals and families requesting assistance, verify eligibility, and process payments for eligible expenses on behalf of households.
I think I’m eligible for this program. What is the application process?
There are three main steps in the application process:
- Determine initial eligibility
- Complete the online Common Household Application Form
- Work with a Local Administrator
I don’t qualify for this program but I still need help payment my rent or mortgage. Where can I look for help?
Visit the Resources for Renters and Homeowners section of the Minnesota Housing COVID-19 webpage for a list of other resources.
Who should I call if I have general questions about the program but not about my own personal eligibility?
How do I get updates about the COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program?
Updates will be posted on Minnesota Housing COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program webpage as they are available. You can also sign up for Minnesota Housing’s eNews list (use Google Chrome or Firefox to access the sign-up link) to receive news and updates.
If you do not have a COVID-19 related loss of income, or if you do not quality for the program listed above…
Visit United Way’s Coronavirus resource page for additional programs that provide financial assistance for individuals and families impacted by COVID-19.
Minnesota Emergency Assistance for Families/Emergency General Assistance is a short-term assistance program for people experiencing a financial hardship. You can access the program application through your local county human services office or at ApplyMN.
Bridge to Benefits
This web-based screening tool can help an individual identify if they’re eligible for public works programs, including SNAP, WIC, School Meal Program, Minnesota Health Care Programs, Energy Assistance and Child Care Assistance. Visit the website here.
Community Action Partnership
Minnesota Community Action Partnership members provide assistance to individuals and families in times of crisis. Find Your Local Community Action Agency
A non-profit Minnesota tenant advocacy organization providing free and low-cost legal, organizing, education, and advocacy services so that tenants throughout Minnesota can solve their own rental housing problems. HOME Line’s hotline is confidential:
- For English, call 612-728-5767 or email your question to one of our housing attorneys.
Toll-free from Greater Minnesota: 866-866-3546
- HOME Line ofrece servicios en español. Para Español, llame al 612-255-8870.
- HOME Line waxay bixisaa adeeg ku baxa Afka-Soomaaliga. Af- Soomaali wac 612-255-8860.
- Peb lub koom haum HOME Line muaj neeg txhais lus Hmoob. Hais lus Hmoob, Hu 612-255-7104.
HOME Line’s tenant hotline remains open during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, HOME Line’s physical office is closed. Call or email for legal advice about your tenancy. General rental housing information regarding COVID-19 is available here, and recordings of all of our COVID-19 rental issue webinars are here.
Visit HOME Line’s website for more information. Click here.
In some cases, direct financial support may not be available. Visit LawHelpMN to understand your rights and options.
Minnesota Attorney General Consumer Protection Division
If the matter is related to a utility, contact the Minnesota Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division:
- Minnesota Attorney General’s Customer Complaint website
- Help with a consumer problem, such as unsatisfactory service, bill disputes, mortgage servicing or foreclosure issues, utility shutoffs or other concerns that an individual would like the Attorney General’s Office to contact on their behalf should be filed at Online Consumer Assistance Request Form.
- To submit complaints by mail or anonymously, download the printable Consumer Assistance Request Form or Fraud Report Form.
- (651)296-3353 or (800)657-3787 8 am – 4:30 pm Monday – Friday
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
HUD has provided a Tenant Guidance Rent Repayment Plan which includes a sample letter to a landlord and other helpful Key Resource Links.
For other questions or topics, you can search resources using 211’s Guided Search tool, or call 211 (651-291-0211) to speak with a Community Resource Specialist.