Cities can help their renting residents by informing them of the state assistance program and helping them gather the necessary documentation to apply.
Minnesota Housing is now offering COVID-19 emergency rental assistance to eligible renters. The RentHelpMN program provides assistance to pay rent and utility bills dated on or after March 13, 2020.
The program is starting by offering assistance to eligible Minnesotans with past-due rent obligations. These individuals may now apply for all offered assistance. The RentHelpMn site will be updated when the program begins accepting all other rent and utility assistance requests.
Renters can review the eligibility checklist to find out if they are eligible for assistance and what documents are needed to apply.
As part of the application process, renters will need to provide a form of ID, their documented income, a rental agreement, and documented utilities for their rented property. While landlords and utility providers may not apply on behalf of renters owing rent or utilities, they may assist the renter in preparing the needed materials. Minnesota Housing has also created a checklist for landlords.
When applying for the program, renters will need to upload the documents to the registration portal. If a renter applies for assistance, the assistance will be paid directly to either the landlord or utility provider, unless they are unresponsive.
Cities can help
Cities can play a role in helping their residents who are renters receive this aid by informing them of the program and helping them gather the necessary documentation to apply.
Minnesota Housing suggests landlords and utility providers provide renters with scans of the documents needed to apply to make the process easier. It may also be helpful to provide facilities to renters for the purpose of scanning documents to apply for RentHelpMN.
Minnesota Housing asks for help from any who are willing with facilitating RentHelpMN. The RentHelpMN website provides informational materials in many languages along with a social media campaign, flyers, posters, etc; the materials are now available.
Minnesota Housing also recorded a webinar on RentHelpMN with a Q&A session available on YouTube.