Atlanta reopens emergency rental assistance program after overwhelming demand

The City of Atlanta will once again begin accepting new applications for emergency housing assistance.

Atlanta shut down its online application portal for the program that provides COVID-19-related housing assistance in December.

The effort was put on pause due to overwhelming demand as soon as the program opened.

"My residents were given the impression that they did everything right to get assistance, but now the United Way has come back and said they ran out of money before they got to them. They ran out of money before they got to anybody in my immigrant community," Atlanta City Councilmember Jennifer Ide said.

But now the digital window to apply for rent and utility help is now back online.

MORE: Atlanta officials begin outreach for rental assistance program

The funds come from $15 million from the U.S. Department of Treasury and are now available for those who call Atlanta home. 

 Ide says she and other city leaders hope the additional dollars will save renters from eviction and keep the utilities connected.

"We are really facing a serious crisis," she said.

Due to federal guidelines, the program will no longer provide mortgage assistance.


And Atlanta is not just the only area being challenged by a lack of funds. Fulton County also ran out of funding for its housing assistance program.

The United Way is contacting households in the city who had recently applied and were put on the waitlist.

Those who can receive the assistance include renters in the incorporated city of Atlanta who have experienced a loss of income because of COVID-19 and have past-due rent, utilities, or security deposits dating back to March 13, 2020. Landlords can also apply for assistance directly.

Officials say the average payment is expected to be around $3,000.

To apply for assistance, you can visit the Atlanta United Way website here or here, call 211 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on the weekdays, or sign up for an in-person application assistance event here.

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