How to Apply for One-Time Emergency Rent Assistance

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How to Apply for One-Time Emergency Rent Assistance

Are you facing an angry landlord threatening eviction? You may be able to get help paying rent to avoid eviction.

The results of eviction are often devastating and can alter your life forever. Anything you can do to prevent it is vital, including requesting .

Receiving temporary rental assistance may be the only thing standing between you and homelessness! If you need help requesting emergency rent assistance, check out DoNotPay. It will help you apply for the emergency help you need.

Avoid a Downward Spiral Into Homelessness

Sometimes, something as simple as a necessary car repair can be enough to cause your life to spiral out of control. Without your ride, you can't get to work, and without that paycheck, you can't pay your rent.

If you use your rent money to pay for the essential car repairs, you may end up using your grocery money to pay at least part of the rent. Unfortunately, even a partial rent payment may not be enough to avoid eviction.

The same downward spiral can happen after unexpected medical expenses, the loss of your job, the theft of your work tools, or anything else that creates chaos in your financial life. It can happen to anyone, which is why there are safety nets in place to provide one-time rental assistance to those in desperate need. Quite often, that one-time offer of help is all you'll need to get your life back on track.

How to Find One-Time Emergency Rent Assistance

Some rental relief sources offer their help across the nation, others are only available locally. To get one-time rental assistance from local organizations, you usually need to provide proof of residency or at least show your intention to live in the area. Just be aware that applying for and receiving rental assistance can often take a long time.

Programs that Provide Rent Assistance Nationwide

If one of these can't help you, look into local programs.

Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP)

The goal of ERAP is to help renters avoid eviction and potentially homelessness. This federal government housing program provides a one-time payment to help with a security deposit plus current and/or past-due rent. The maximum payment is generally $4,250, although exceptions might be made due to extraordinary circumstances. The ERAP program is one of the largest rental assistance programs in the country right now, although there's no telling how long it will last.

The following may apply for ERAP:

  • The elderly
  • People with disabilities or other special needs
  • Families with children
  • Anyone at risk of homelessness if they don't receive housing assistance


This one-time rental housing grant program is funded by states and cities across the country in conjunction with the federal government. The grant can be used to cover a security deposit and the first month's rent or to catch up on past-due rent. Over any five-year period, you can claim up to six months worth of assistance.

To qualify, you must be:

  • Singles (125% of federal poverty level)
  • Families with children (200% of federal poverty level)
  • Receiving food stamps or Medicaid

Specific Medical Diagnosis Programs

Many organizations provide resources and aid to people diagnosed with a specific medical condition. The Multiple Sclerosis Foundation (known as MS Focus) is one such organization. They provide a one-time MS Focus Emergency Assistance Grant to help patients with rent or utilities.

If you suffer from a medical condition with an organization behind it, it never hurts to see if they are willing to offer emergency rent assistance.


Crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe and Modest Needs allow you to ask for emergency help from often surprisingly generous strangers.

For more one-time rental assistance program options, call United Way's 24-hour helpline at 211. It will help connect you with available resources in your community.

How to Apply for One-Time Emergency Rent Assistance on Your Own

First, you'll need to find a program that can help with your unique situation and that has funding available. Then you'll have to fill out paperwork, provide the required proof (identity, address, income, etc.) You might also need to make an appointment for a face-to-face meeting to discuss your situation.

Unfortunately, finding emergency help with rent isn't as easy as it could be due to a large number of non-profit organizations and government agencies involved. Each group has its own set of income guidelines and other requirements needed to qualify. Trying to find the right organization and muddling your way through their diverse requirements can often seem overwhelming.

Good thing there's an easier way. Let DoNotPay do the work for you!

How to Apply for One-Time Emergency Rent Assistance with DoNotPay

We can compose a letter to your local housing authority based on your situation and inquire about your best options for receiving assistance. Here are the 4 steps:

  1. Search for Rental Assistance on DoNotPay.

  2. Put together a list of your income, debts, expenses, and assets. If you need help accessing information like your credit report, DoNotPay can help you get your report.

  3. Let DoNotPay collect your basic information and compose a letter to your local housing authority requesting rental assistance.

  4. Lastly, DoNotPay will send your letter to your local housing authority.

Rental Assistance by State

DoNotPay works across all agencies, companies, and groups with a single click. With the Rental Assistance product from DoNotPay, you can apply for all of the rental assistance funding that you're qualified to receive within just minutes.

TexasCaliforniaNew York
IllinoisNorth CarolinaOhio
GeorgiaVirginiaWashington State
ColoradoNew JerseyPennsylvania
South CarolinaMinnesota Alabama
Washington DCKansasKentucky
LouisianaNew MexicoArkansas
HawaiiUtahWest Virginia
NebraskaMaineNorth Dakota
South DakotaMissouriOklahoma
Rhode IslandIowa

Trust DoNotPay to Help With Other Rental-Related Issues

Helping you get isn't the only way DoNotPay can help with problems related to a rental. From dealing with a harassing landlord to setting up a roommate agreement you can both live with, DoNotPay is your ultimate resource for all things related to rentals.

We can help you with these 8 Rental Issues:

  1. Send Demand Letters To your landlord for unsafe living conditions.
  2. Is your landlord harassing you? Stop landlord harassment with DoNotPay's help.
  3. Learn how to get a HUD voucher for safe, affordable Section 8 housing.
  4. Amend your lease.
  5. Request an extension of your lease.
  6. Write a roommate agreement to settle any issues in advance.
  7. Get your security deposit back.
  8. Remove an eviction from your credit report.

Rental problems aren't the only issues DoNotPay can help you with. We have a wide and ever-expanding range of products to help with all of the annoying, bothersome, and sometimes serious matters that arise in daily life.

If you need quick, easy, convenient, and successful answers to your problems, let help.

Want your issue solved now?