Applications now open for Durham program that helps those behind on rent due to pandemic

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Durham County residents who have been struggling financially because of the pandemic can now apply for assistance. 

The Durham Emergency Rental Assistance Program will help people pay for rent and utilities.

Rihanna Jones-Adams was one of the first people trying to sign up when the application became active this afternoon.

She says she missed nearly a month of work after testing positive for COVID-19 and she’s been behind financially ever since.

“I don’t have any secondary support, I work and pay my bills completely dependent so that was a lot…missing that much time off from work that I was missing an entire paycheck,” Jones-Adams said.

If you are accepted into the program, you can receive help financial help for up to 12 months, including both arrears and forward rent and utilities.

According to the City, public housing residents and tenants who receive housing subsidies are eligible for rental assistance to cover any portion of rent and utilities that the tenant pays for.

Utilities include electricity, gas, water, sewer, wastewater, trash removal, and fuel oil. Internet expenses may also be covered under the program.

In order to be eligible for the program, you must be a current resident of Durham County, renting a room, apartment or home in Durham County, household income at or below 80 percent of area median income and at least one person in the household must qualify for unemployment or has financial hardship due to COVID-19, or the person is at risk of homelessness or housing instability.

The Department of Treasury said priority will be given to households with incomes less than 50 percent of area median income.

If you would like to apply for the program, click here.

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