Treasury Revises Emergency Rental Assistance Guidance

On March 16, the U.S. Treasury released revised guidance on its Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program, which was created by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021. The supplemental guidance clarifies several aspects of the ERA program, most notably that the program allows using security deposits, rental application fees and applicant screening charges for covering a portion of back rent. The revised guidance also clarifies that the program may cover the cost of hotel or motel rooms occupied by eligible households — those who have been temporarily or permanently displaced from their primary residences or do not have a permanent residence elsewhere — for up to 12 months. Additionally, the revised FAQ points out that rental payments for a manufactured home and/or the land on which the manufactured home is placed are eligible for financial assistance under the ERA program. Households who are renting their residence under a “rent-to-own” agreement, where the renter has the opportunity to purchase the unit at the end of the lease, are also eligible for assistance under the program.

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