CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WTRF) — Gov. Justice reminded West Virginians in his briefing today that rental assistance is available for renters as well as landlords.
West Virginia renters and landlords in need can find help with rent and utility bills because of financial hardship during or due to the coronavirus through the Mountaineer Rental Assistance Program.
According to the agency website, “Not all renters are eligible for assistance. In general, the program is designed to assist West Virginia residential renters with annual income of no more than 80 percent of area median income (AMI).”
The agency website also stipulates that, “One or more household members has qualified for unemployment benefits, experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced other financial hardship during or due directly or indirectly to the coronavirus outbreak.”
In addition, the Mountaineer Rental Assistance Program requires that, “One or more household members are at risk of homelessness or housing instability such as a past due utility or rent notice or an eviction notice.”
Eligible Expenses for the Mountaineer Rental Assistance Program may include:
- Past due and current rent beginning April 1, 2020 and up to three months forward rent a maximum of 18 months’ rental assistance
- Past due and current water, sewer, gas, electric and home energy costs such as propane for a maximum of 18 months’ utility assistance
- A one-time $300 stipend for internet expenses so you can use the internet for distance learning, telework, telemedicine and/or to obtain government services
- Relocation expenses – security deposits, application fees, utility deposit/connection fees
- Eviction Court costs
- Recovery Housing Program fees
There is no cap on the amount of assistance provided, however, households are only eligible for 18 months of assistance for rental and utility expenses.
To apply, go to the Mountaineer Rental Assistance Program site or call 211.