Resources available for people facing eviction in Louisiana

Resources available for people facing eviction in Louisiana
Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 1:22 PM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - Several eviction moratoriums kept landlords and mortgage companies at bay as the COVID-19 pandemic raged. The moratorium expires Saturday, with no expectation for renewal.

Monroe Planning and Urban Development Director Ellen Hill said the City of Monroe received more than $400,000 from its first allocation of CARES Act money. The city earmarked $200,000 of that for housing help.

About 50 people struggling to make ends meet received emergency rental funds. It helps keep a roof over their head while they plan their next move.

“So, you had to have lost hours, lost your job. Perhaps you had COVID and you had to quit working,” said Hill.

The city’s assistance lasts for three months.

“We can go back three months, or we can help you with three months going forward,” Hill explained.

It covers rent and energy bills. You need to meet a few requirements before the city cuts the check.

“Your letter from your landlord showing you’re getting evicted, your lease. If you’re getting unemployment, that’s what we take for proof you were affected by COVID,” said Hill.

The money goes directly to your landlord if they are willing to participate in the program.

“There is still time to act,” said Scott Hudman, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development spokesperson. Hudman says if you’re facing eviction, the Louisiana Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps people statewide.

$17.1 million has been allocated to thousands of people so far. It’s an income-based program that can pay rent and utilities for a year. Money can go either to the renter or landlord.

“There is definitely funding available through the American Rescue Plan and those are the types of money that are going to the states for the states to operate their programs,” Hudman said.

You can also search for affordable housing near you on HUD’s website.

The demand for these resources could make the process more lengthy. Both agencies say it’s important to persist before it’s too late.

“There will be consequences for people that have not worked out their rental situation with their landlords or with their mortgage companies,” implored Hudman.

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