City of Alexandria Receives State Funding to Provide Additional Rent and Mortgage Relief
For Immediate Release: July 10, 2020
The City of Alexandria will provide additional rent and mortgage relief to eligible residents, using an initial $450,000 of funds from the Virginia Rent and Mortgage Relief Program to support housing stability during the COVID-19 pandemic. The City’s Department of Community and Human Services will administer the funds. These funds are in addition to the $4 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act funds being distributed through the Emergency Rent Relief Assistance Program and $671,500 in federal Community Development Block Grant funds for tenants of affordable housing, both administered by the City’s Office of Housing.
Financial assistance is a one-time payment, with opportunity for renewal based on availability of funding and the household’s need for additional assistance and continued eligibility. Eligible households must demonstrate an inability to make rent or mortgage payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Monthly rent or mortgage must be at or below 150% Fair Market Rent as determined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and eligible households must have a gross household income at or below 80% of area median income (AMI).
Residents can take a self-assessment survey in English or Spanish to determine if they are eligible, and call 703.746.5700 to apply. Individuals and families who receive funding will also be connected to housing counseling to receive other technical assistance.
To ensure program funding assists households most in need, the program will target outreach to communities of color across Virginia. Before the pandemic, analysis from the RVA Eviction Lab at Virginia Commonwealth University found that these communities had higher eviction rates, even after controlling for income, property value and other characteristics. The COVID-19 pandemic has also had a disproportionate impact on people of color.
The program will give precedence to households without other federal and state eviction or foreclosure protections. Until July 20, priority will be given to households with current gross incomes equal to or below 50% of AMI. After July 20, households with current gross incomes at or below 80% of AMI will be included. In addition, households with an unlawful detainer action dated before June 8 will be given top consideration. Tenants and homeowners are encouraged to know their rights and responsibilities and pay their rent and mortgages on time if they are able.
Persons who live outside Alexandria who wish to apply for assistance should visit dhcd.virginia.gov/eligibility to identify the local administrator or call 211 VIRGINIA by dialing 2-1-1.
For inquiries from the news media or requests for reasonable disability accommodation, contact Andrea Blackford, Senior Communications Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703.746.3959, Virginia Relay 711.
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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/116655.