Mayor's Office

Emergency Rental Assistance Program

Emergency Rental Assistance Program

Qualifying renters and landlords are now eligible for 100% of rent and utilities owed

The City of Fresno has received nearly $35 million from the federal and state governments to provide emergency rental assistance grants to improve housing stability in these unprecedented and uncertain economic times.  The City along with six community-benefit organizations (CBOs) will process the applications and provide relief to both landlords and tenants.  The City of Fresno’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) is available to residents in the City of Fresno that has been negatively impacted by COVID-19 and is unable to pay their full amount of rent and utilities from April 1, 2020, to September 31, 2021.

What kind of assistance is covered?

UNPAID RENT

Landlords who participate in the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program can get reimbursed for an eligible renter’s unpaid rent dating back to April 1, 2020.

Eligible renters whose landlords choose not to participate in the program may apply on their own and receive assistance for unpaid rent dating back to April 1, 2020.

FUTURE RENT

Eligible renters can receive financial assistance for their upcoming monthly rent.

UTILITY ASSISTANCE: UNPAID OR UPCOMING

Eligible renters may also receive assistance for unpaid utility payments dating back to April 1, 2020, or for future utility payments, which will both be compensated at 100% of the cost, limited to a total of 12 months, and paid directly to the utility provider.

Note:  Utilities that are covered by the landlord, will be treated as rent.

Priority Phases of this program are as follows:

  • Priority 1 – Rent arrears for applicants below 50% Area Median Income (AMI)
  • Priority 2 – Rent arrears for applicants between 50% and 80% AMI
  • Priority 3 – Utility arrears
  • Priority 4 – Prospective Rent

What paperwork is needed? 

RENTERS:  If you have been impacted by COVID-19, are income-eligible and have unpaid rent or utilities, or need help with future rent or utilities, you can apply for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP).

Tenant Eligibility Requirements and Documents:

  • Rental Property is located in the City of Fresno
  • Tenant must meet income requirements (refer to Fresno County Area Median Income table below); and
  • Tenant must complete the tenant portion of the online application

Include any of the following that applies to determine income eligibility:
*Note:  Those who show proof of participation in a state or federal subsidy program such as CalFresh, WIC, CalWORKS, etc do not need to show further proof of income

  • Your 2020 Tax Return
  • 2020 W2 and 1099G if you were unemployed
  • Current pay stubs
  • Proof of participation in state or federal subsidy programs such as CalFresh or CalWORKS (your 2020 or 2021 acceptance or renewal letter is preferred).

AND — IF YOU ARE APPLYING FOR HELP WITH UTILITY BILLS:

  • Utility invoices or statements for any unpaid utility, water, trash, and internet bills after April 1, 2020.

LANDLORDS:  If you have renters who are behind on their rent and need financial assistance to support this income loss, you may apply for the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program, so long as:

  • Your renter’s household is income eligible (refer to Fresno County Area Median Income table below)
  • All payments you receive must be used to satisfy the renter’s unpaid rent. The eligible timeframe for financial assistance dates back to April 1, 2020.
  • Your renter(s) must take steps to verify that they meet eligibility requirements and sign the application.

Income-eligible applicants may qualify regardless of immigration status and will not be required to show proof of citizenship.

Landlord Eligibility Requirements and Documents:

  • Rental Property is located in the City of Fresno
  • Eligible renters with rental/utility arrears or seeking prospective rent
  • Landlord must complete the landlord portion of the online application

Include the following:

  • Lease or rental agreement reflecting renter’s name, residence address, and monthly rent due
  • Rent ledger or rent statement showing the balance of unpaid rent from April 1, 2020
  • W-9 (for tax purposes)

Fresno County Area Median Income — 50% and 80% Income Limits*

*Persons in the Family 50% Income Limit 80% Income Limit
1 $24,400 $39,050
2 $27,900 $44,600
3 $31,400 $50,200
4 $34,850 $55,750
5 $37,650 $60,250
6 $40,550 $64,700
7 $43,250 $69,150
8 $46,050 $73,600

If you do not live in the City of Fresno, but live in the County of Fresno please contact the County for Emergency Rental Assistance

County of Fresno website
County of Fresno Email:  erap@rhcbfresno.com
County of Fresno Phone:  (559) 515-4700

Frequently Asked Questions and Related Information

Tenant FAQ

Who do I contact to inquire information about the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program or if I need help filling out the application?

If you have any questions regarding this program, please email ERAP@fresno.gov or call (559) 621-6801.

What are the eligibility requirements for this program?

Eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • Rental Property is located in the City of Fresno
  • Tenant must meet income requirements (refer to Fresno County Area Median Income table below); and
  • Tenant must complete the tenant portion of the online application

Include any of the following that applies to determine income eligibility:
*Note:  Those who show proof of participation in a state or federal subsidy program such as CalFresh, WIC, CalWORKS, etc. do not need to show further proof of income

What documentation is required for the application? 

  • Your 2020 Tax Return
  • 2020 W2 and 1099G if you were unemployed
  • Current pay stubs
  • Proof of participation in state or federal subsidy programs such as CalFresh or CalWORKS (your 2020 or 2021 acceptance or renewal letter is preferred).

If a landlord refuses to participate in the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, can a tenant still apply?

Yes.  A tenant can apply and if eligible, will be paid directly for 100% of rental arrears dating back to April 1, 2021.  Any outstanding utilities will be paid directly to the utility provider.

When do the eviction protections end?

The state’s current eviction moratorium has been extended to September 30, 2021

What does a tenant need to do to be protected from eviction for non-payment of rent under AB 832?

Return a declaration of COVID-19 related financial distress, signed under penalty of perjury, and returned within 15 business days of receiving a notice to “pay or quit.” The landlord may request that the declaration be filled out monthly with every notice to “pay or quit.”

Rental debt that accumulated due to COVID-19 hardship that was incurred on or after September 1, 2020, and before September 30, 2021, a landlord must be provided 25 percent of the unpaid rent demanded in the notice that forms the basis of the complaint before October 1, 2021, to prevent an unlawful detainer judgment based on that complaint.

How much rental assistance do I qualify for?

If the landlord agrees to participate in this program, 100% of rental arrears will be made directly to the landlord on behalf of the eligible household. If the landlord refuses to participate, payment will be made directly to the renter. However, the renter has 15 business days to remit payment to the landlord or face a penalty.

Can I receive assistance for my utility costs?

Eligible renters may also receive assistance for past due utility payments. Past due utilities accumulated from April 1, 2020, through March 31, 2021, will be compensated in full up to a total of 12 months. You may receive assistance paying utilities and home energy costs that are not covered by the landlord and that are billed separately such as electricity, gas, water sewer, trash removal, and energy costs, such as fuel oil. Internet service is also an eligible cost.

All payments for utilities and home energy costs should be supported by a bill, invoice, or evidence of payment to the provider of the utility or home energy service. Utilities and home energy costs that are covered by the landlord will be treated as rent. Payments of utility costs will be paid directly to a utility provider based on the utility bill information provided.

Note: Utilities that are covered by the landlord within rent will be treated as rent.

Landlord FAQ

Who do I contact to inquire information about the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP)?

If you have any questions regarding this program, please email ERAP@fresno.gov or call (559) 621-6801.

What are the eligibility requirements for this program?

  • Rental Property is located in the City of Fresno
  • Tenant must meet income requirements and be below 80% Fresno County Median Area Income (AMI)
  • Your renter’s household is income-eligible
  • All payments you receive must be used to satisfy the renter’s unpaid rent. The eligible time frame for financial assistance dates back to April 1, 2020.

Your renter’s take steps to verify that they meet eligibility requirements and sign the application
The landlord must complete the landlord portion of the online application

What documentation is required for the application?

All documentation will need to be uploaded to the online application platform. Required documentation is as follows:

  • Completed ACH form for direct payment to your financial institution
  • Rental Agreement
  • Rental Statement showing rent arrears
  • W-9

How much assistance is provided for rental arrears?

If the landlord agrees to participate in this program, 100% of rental arrears will be made directly to the landlord on behalf of the eligible household dating back to April 1, 2020. If the landlord refuses to participate, payment will be made directly to the renter.

Are tenants of federally subsidized housing, e.g., Low Income Housing Credit, Public Housing, or Indian Housing Block Grant-assisted properties, eligible for ERAP?

Yes. An eligible household that occupies a federally subsidized residential or mixed-use property may receive ERA assistance if ERA funding is not applied to costs that have been or will be reimbursed under any other federal assistance.

However, if an eligible household receives a monthly federal subsidy (e.g., a Housing Choice Voucher, Public Housing, or Project-Based Rental Assistance) and the tenant rent is adjusted according to changes in income, the renter household is not eligible to receive ERA assistance.

Can I get help paying utilities? 

Yes.  Utilities that are covered by the landlord within rent will be treated as rent.

Eligible renters may also receive assistance for past due utility payments. Past due utilities accumulated from April 1, 2020, through March 31, 2021, will be compensated in full up to a total of 12 months. You may receive assistance paying utilities and home energy costs that are not covered by the landlord and that are billed separately such as electricity, gas, water sewer, trash removal, and energy costs, such as fuel oil. Internet service is also an eligible cost.

All payments for utilities and home energy costs should be supported by a bill, invoice, or evidence of payment to the provider of the utility or home energy service. Utilities and home energy costs that are covered by the landlord will be treated as rent. Payments of utility costs will be paid directly to a utility provider based on the utility bill information provided.

If you would like to contact one of our Partner Organization for direct assistance, please contact them directly.