Emergency Rental Assistance Program

Keeping Families in their Homes

Even as the American economy continues its recovery from the devastating impact of the pandemic, millions of Americans face deep rental debt and fear evictions and the loss of basic housing security. COVID-19 has exacerbated an affordable housing crisis that predated the pandemic and that has exacerbated deep disparities that threaten the strength of an economic recovery that must work for everyone.

To meet this need, the Emergency Rental Assistance program makes funding available to assist households that are unable to pay rent or utilities.  Two separate programs have been established: ERA1 provides up to $25 billion under the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which was enacted on December 27, 2020, and ERA2 provides up to $21.55 billion under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which was enacted on March 11, 2021.  The funds are provided directly to states, U.S. territories, local governments, and (in the case of ERA1) Indian tribes.  Grantees use the funds to provide assistance to eligible households through existing or newly created rental assistance programs.

ERA1 ALLOCATIONS AND PAYMENTS

ERA1 payments are made directly to states (including the District of Columbia), U.S. territories (Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa), local governments with more than 200,000 residents, the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, and Indian tribes (defined to include Alaska native corporations) or the tribally designated housing entity of an Indian tribe, as applicable (collectively the “eligible grantees”).1  

At least 90 percent of awarded funds must be used for direct financial assistance, including rent, rental arrears, utilities and home energy costs, utilities and home energy costs arrears, and other expenses related to housing.  Remaining funds are available for housing stability services, including case management and other services intended to keep households stably housed.  ERA1 funds generally expire on September 30, 2022.  For ease of reference, the assistance listing number (CDFA number) assigned to the ERA program is 21.023.

Information for States, Territories, and Local Governments:

Information for Tribes:

ERA2 ALLOCATIONS AND PAYMENTS

ERA2 payments are made directly to states (including the District of Columbia), U.S. territories (Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa), and local governments with more than 200,000 residents.  ERA2 sets aside $2.5 billion for eligible grantees with a high need for ERA2 assistance, based on the number of very low-income renter households paying more than 50 percent of income on rent or living in substandard or overcrowded conditions, rental market costs, and change in employment since February 2020.

At least 90 percent of awarded funds must be used for direct financial assistance, including rent, rental arrears, utilities and home energy costs, utilities and home energy costs arrears, and other expenses related to housing.  Remaining funds are available for housing stability services, including case management and other services intended to keep households stably housed.  ERA2 funds generally expire on September 30, 2025.  For ease of reference, the assistance listing number (CDFA number) assigned to the ERA program is 21.023.

Information for States, Territories, and Local Governments:

ERA FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)

On May 7, 2021, Treasury updated its previously issued ERA1 FAQs to provide updates regarding ERA1 and to add guidance regarding ERA2.  All eligible entities should review these FAQs, which provide important information regarding the ERA.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Under the statute, Treasury disburses ERA funds to states and other governmental entities, not directly to households or landlords.  Please review the list of eligible grantees on this site and contact your state or other eligible governmental entity for information on how to apply to receive assistance under a program funded by the ERA.

The ERA1 application process has been completed.

Treasury has made available an electronic portal through which eligible entities can complete and submit the ERA2 financial assistance agreement and a payment information form.  Prospective grantees should review in full the statutory requirements and the FAQs above for program requirements.

 

  1. More specifically, the statute includes Indian tribes, including Alaska native corporations, that were eligible for a grant under title I of the Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act of 1996 (NAHASDA) (25 U.S.C. 4111 et seq.) for fiscal year 2020.