National real estate advocacy organizations, including CARH, sent a letter today urging the Administration to immediately implement improvements to the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) that can accelerate the distribution of federal funds to renters and housing providers in need.
While many jurisdictions are successfully increasing their ERAP disbursement, others are fraught with significant application processing and payment delivery delays. These are largely attributable to grantees’ self-imposed fraud prevention measures, mandates that deter housing provider participation, misapplication of statutory requirements and lack of engagement from certain eligible residents.
Changes are needed to maximize the reach of ERAP funds to renters and housing providers and to ensure greater consistency across programs, especially in areas of overlapping coverage.
Renters are faced with further uncertainty and a mounting debt cliff, while rental property owners move closer to foreclosure, bankruptcy, or a forced sale of the property. putting the overall stability of the rental housing sector and broader real estate market in peril.
The letter letter makes several recommendations to improve disbursement of ERAP and increase participation in the program. By making these suggested reforms, the Administration can address the underlying financial distress faced by renters, ensure they’re able to remain stable in their housing for the remainder of the pandemic and prevent continued disruption and instability in the rental housing market.