A new program launched on March 15 by the Connecticut Department of Housing will leverage $235 million in federal funding to provide rent and utility relief to struggling tenants in the state who are facing possible eviction. Entitled “UniteCT,” the program is available to qualified Connecticut households financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Job and income losses caused by the pandemic and the resulting economic shutdown have placed thousands of Connecticut renters at risk of eviction, with still more having missed rent payments since the pandemic began. Without intervention, many of these households are at risk of homelessness when the state eviction moratorium expires on April 19.
Landlords are feeling the pinch as well. Many Connecticut landlords are small mom-and-pop businesses that rely on rents to pay their own mortgages, healthcare costs, and personal expenses, and lack the resources to sustain their businesses for long periods without collecting rent.
UniteCT will pay past and future rent up to a total of $10,000 per household, as well as outstanding electric utility bills up to a total of $1,500. The program can be accessed by either tenants or landlords (with permission of the tenant.) Households earning up to 80% of their Area Median Income may be eligible.
An online portal has been established where people can apply for the program and upload necessary documents. In addition, the state has engaged with housing counseling agencies and other partners to assist those who may need added support to access the UniteCT program.
Want to apply, or learn more? Visit the UniteCT website at https://portal.ct.gov/DOH/DOH/Programs/UniteCT.