Learn more about the Governor's newly announced housing assistance

On Tuesday, July 14, 2020, Governor Walz announced that up to $100 million of funding will be allocated from the state’s Covid-19 Relief Fund to create a new housing assistance program to help prevent evictions, prevent homelessness, and maintain housing stability of individuals and households impacted by COVID-19. The $100 million is anticipated to be funded with federal dollars through the Coronavirus Relief Fund, which was authorized by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
 
In conjunction with the Governor’s announcement, Minnesota Housing immediately launched a COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program Request for Proposals (RFP). The purpose of this RFP is to select local organizations to administer the housing assistance program. Grants will be made to local administrators to provide outreach; accept and process applications from individuals and households requesting assistance; validate individual or household eligibility; and process payments for eligible expenses on behalf of individuals or households to help maintain housing stability.
 
We anticipate that local programs will begin serving individuals and households in mid-August. Additional information will be posted on this webpage, including where individuals and households can apply for assistance in their region.

Questions and Answers for Individuals and Households Seeking Assistance

When and where can I apply for assistance?

We anticipate individuals and households will be able to apply for assistance from local grant administrators in their region in mid-August. This webpage will provide updates when they are available.
 
For more immediate help:

Who will be the local grant administrators?

Local programs will begin serving individuals and households in mid-August. They will be listed on this webpage when they are selected. 
 
Local administrators will determine eligibility, process applications, and make payments on behalf of individuals and households for eligible expenses.

Who will be eligible to apply for assistance?

To qualify for housing assistance, individuals and households must meet all of the criteria listed below:
  • Be a Minnesota resident.
  • Renters with incomes at or below 300% of federal poverty guidelines, with a preference for those at or below 200% of federal poverty guidelines; and homeowners with incomes at or below 300% of federal poverty guidelines. To see if your income qualifies, please see the FY 2020 Federal Poverty Guidelines.
  • Have an eligible expense that was incurred after March 1, 2020 that is past due. Housing assistance funds can only be used for eligible expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 and December 30, 2020.
  • Be unable to make the payment(s) owed because of the public health emergency due to unemployment, illness, or another COVID-19 related issue.

What expenses will be eligible for assistance?

If needed to maintain housing security, avoid displacement, and are past their due date, eligible expenses can include:

  • Rent payments
  • Mortgage payments (including insurance)
  • Contract for deed payments
  • Manufactured home park lot rents
  • Manufactured home payments
  • Utility payments
  • Association fees
  • Homeowner’s insurance
  • Additional housing related costs approved by Minnesota Housing

How will housing assistance payments be processed?

If an individual or household has a qualifying expense, funds must be paid directly to the following:
  • Landlord or leasing agent for a rental unit;​
  • Servicer for a mortgage or the entity who owns the mortgage for a​ homeowner;​
  • Contract for deed vendor or seller;​
  • Utility company;
  • Manufactured home park owner; or​
  • Any other identified entity to which payment for the direct financial assistance is owed.​
Assistance cannot be paid directly to individuals or households.

Can a landlord apply for assistance on behalf of a tenant that owes past rent?

At this time, tenants will need to directly apply for their past-due rent.

How can I get updates?

Updates will be posted on this webpage as they are available. You can also sign up for our eNews list to receive news and updates including when local administrators will begin accepting applications.