NC rental assistance programs brace for more need as national eviction ban ends

North Carolina news

RALEIGH N.C. (WNCN) – The end of July marks the end of federal eviction protection for people who are behind on rent due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

But county and state programs still have money to help people struggling because of the pandemic.

According to survey data released in July by the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 209,000 people report they are behind on rent.

The North Carolina emergency COVID-19 rental assistance fund, or HOPE Program, has seen a spike in people reaching out for help — 90,000 people called their hotline in July.

Laura Hogshead with the North Carolina Office of Recovery and Resiliency said it’s not too late for renters to reach out for help.

“We have seen an increase in the number of applications and an increase in the number of calls throughout the last few months but it is picking up speed now,” Hogshead said. “The HOPE program is able to pay within 14 to 19 days, so it is almost as fast as pursuing an eviction.”

The HOPE program serves 88 counties in North Carolina, while other larger counties like Wake and Orange have their own rental and utility programs.

The City of Raleigh and Wake County have a combined $83 million of emergency COVID-19 rental and utility assistance left.

Helpful links for rental assistance funding:

NC HOPE PROGRAM:
www.Hope.nc.gov
888-9ASK-HOPE (888-927-5467)

HOUSE WAKE PROGRAM:
WWW.HOUSEWAKE.ORG
(919) 899-9911

ORANGE COUNTY HOUSING HELPLINE:
919-245-2655
housinghelp@orangecountync.gov

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