“It’s bad:” Virginia Rent Relief Portal stopping new applications May 15

Published: Apr. 25, 2022 at 11:32 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Starting May 15, the Virginia Rent Relief Program Portal will no longer accept new applications.

“It’s bad, it’s short notice, and short notice means lots of folks who found themselves having to apply every few months didn’t have a lot of time to plan what they’re going to do. It’s bad because the underlying need isn’t going away,” said Gustavo Espinosa with Legal Aid Justice Center.

Espinosa is a bilingual rent relief assistant who submits applications on behalf of families needing help.

Here’s who’s prioritized: Households with incomes less than 50% of the area median income or households with one or more individuals that have not been employed for the 90-day period preceding the date of application.

Any application submitted between now and May 15 will be prioritized on these criteria, then processed on a first-come-first-served basis.

Since the federal eviction moratorium ended last July, LAJC says it has submitted 525 rent relief applications and now the pressure is on to get more in. That’s because starting July 1, 2022, COVID-19 eviction protections will end.

“Inevitably with the eviction protections ending and with rent relief ending, there’s going to be an uptick in evictions and cities need to be ready to support their residents,” Espinosa said.

Charlottesville and Albemarle County do have grant programs for rent relief. For assistance through the city or county, call 833-524-2904 or the Spanish line: 434-373-0930.

LAJC’s Rent Relief Helpline number is 434-326-4305.

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