Wake County and the City of Raleigh launched this program in March 2021 to provide financial assistance to renters, landlords and utility companies to cover rent and utility shortfalls resulting from a financial hardship due to COVID-19. The program pays 100% of any back rent owed since April 2020, in addition to assistance for the current month. After that, tenants may be eligible for up to three months of additional assistance.

For households where financial assistance is not enough, House Wake! COVID-19 Financial Assistance Program is offering two additional services.

  • For renters who need legal counsel to negotiate filed evictions with landlords, Legal Aid of NC will provide pro bono (free) legal services on tenant rights information, CDC eviction moratorium guidance with technical assistance to complete affidavits and mediation services. Legal Aid of NC is also offering households below 50% of area median income additional prevention services for persons at-risk of homelessness.
  • For households below 50% of area median income unable to maintain their current home and are at-risk of homelessness due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Wake County is offering Homeless Prevention & Relocation Services.
Applicants are eligible if:

  • ✓ They live in Wake County and can show proof of residency;
  • ✓ They have a legally binding NC lease that covers the assistance period;
  • ✓ One or more member of the household has qualified for unemployment benefit, has experienced a reduction in income, incurred significant costs or experienced other financial hardships due to COVID-19;
  • ✓ Their income does not exceed 80% of area median income (AMI), with priority given to households with incomes below 50% AMI; and
  • ✓ Are at risk of homelessness or housing instability if rent or utility bills remain unpaid.

Eligible landlords must:

  • Not have a tax-delinquent property or should be on a payment / forgiveness program;
  • Must provide documentation verifying rent due;
  • Be able to accept third-party payment; and
  • Must sign the Rental Assistance Agreement between landlord, tenant and administrator.

The program will determine if landlord meets eligibility requirement, secure a Rental Assistance Agreement, collect any relevant documents for processing payments and retain all documents for the permanent record.

Residents can receive financial assistance for any back rent and/or utility bills owed since April 2020, in addition to assistance for the current month.

Following the initial three-month period, if additional periods of support are approved the program will continue to pay 100% rent and utility payments for households under 50% area median income (AMI). Applicants earning over 50% AMI will have an added requirement to begin paying 30% of their income toward rent and utilities upon recertification.

In the instance where utilities are included in rent, the tenant will pay 30% of their income toward rent and the program will pay the remaining balance. In the instance where utilities are not included in the rent, the tenant will pay 30% of their income toward rent and the program will pay the remaining balance and continue to pay 100% of allowable utility expenses.

As a landlord or property owner, you may initiate the application for assistance on behalf of your tenant. Once you submit your application, a Telamon Eviction Preventions Specialist will reach out to the tenant to complete the process. The tenant must agree to apply and participate in the program as well.

Applications can be submitted by:

Any qualified tenant whose landlord declines to participate in the program and pursues eviction will be referred our partner, Legal Aid of NC, for legal representation, at no cost to Wake County, City of Raleigh or the tenant.