Orlando reopens city’s rental assistance program for those facing COVID-19 hardships

ORLANDO, Fla. — Mayor Buddy Dyer on Monday announced the reopening of the city’s rental assistance program, which provides support to residents impacted by COVID-19 by providing funding to cover rent payments that have not been made since March.

The program is a partnership with Heart of Florida United Way.

According to a news release, the process has been streamlined with an abbreviated application form and less documentation required. Click here to apply.

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“The City of Orlando will continue to do all we can to leverage state and federal dollars to help our residents who are facing unexpected and difficult economic circumstances as a result of this global pandemic,” Dyer said in a news release. “We are grateful this program can alleviate the pressure and stress families have about their unpaid rental payments, especially while we are in the middle of the holiday season.”

The program originally opened for 10 days in September and has provided nearly $700,000 in financial support to more than 220 households, according to a news release.

The program is funded with about $1.5 million in state coronavirus relief funds provided by the CARES Act.

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Eligibility requirements for rental assistance include:

  • Live within City of Orlando limits
  • Experienced a COVID-19 hardship such as a furlough, layoff or reduced hours at work
  • Paid February 2020 rent payment
  • Have a current or month-to-month lease agreement for the rental of a residence or partial residence (this can include the rental of a room)

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Residents must supply the following as part of their application:

  • Certification rent payments have not already been covered by federal benefits or other charitable donations
  • Certification of a financial hardship due to COVID-19
  • Copy of lease agreement
  • W-9 form completed by tenant’s landlord
  • Copy (or copies) of drivers’ license or government-issued identification for each adult household member claiming a COVID-19 hardship

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Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.