The New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) has announced the re-opening of the COVID Rent Relief Program with expanded eligibility criteria in an effort to serve New Yorkers who many not have had the opportunity to apply during the initial round of grants or those who may have been previously ineligible. State HCR began accepting applications on December 18 and will continue accepting applications through February 1, 2021.
Residents that previously applied for COVID Rent Relief will not have to reapply to be reconsidered under the new eligibility criteria. State HCR will re-evaluate all applications that were previously denied and will issue revised determination letters to applicants. The State Program's eligibility criteria have been changed. Households are no longer required to have been "rent burdened" prior to the pandemic inorder to qualify. Rent burden is defined by paying more than thirty percent of monthly gross income toward rent. To qualify for this one-time subsidy, low-income renters impacted by the pandemic must meet all of the following criteria:
1. Must be a renter and have a primary residence in New York State
4. Households must be "rent burdened" during the months they are
applying for assistance (between April 1, 2020 and July 31, 2020)
For the purposes of assessing applicant income, cash benefits and
unemployment benefits are both included in the calculation.
The subsidy for eligible applicants will be calculated as the difference
between the household's rent burden on March 1, 2020 and the household's
rent burden during the subsequent months of April, May, June and July of
2020. For applicants who were not considered rent burdened on March 1, 2020,
the subsidy will be calculated to bring them to the thirty percent rent