Payments will generally not exceed 12 months of rent, the state said, though some homes may qualify for up to 15 months based on their circumstances.
“The state of Georgia is pleased to be able to provide this rental relief to those who have fallen behind in rent and utility bills due to the pandemic,” Tonya Cureton Curry, the deputy commissioner of housing for the department of community affairs, said in a statement. “We encourage renters and landlords to check the online portal immediately to determine if they are eligible. It’s our hope this assistance will help lessen the financial burdens many Georgian families and individuals are facing.”
The funding comes from the U.S. Treasury’s $25 billion Federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program, which was part of the stimulus bill passed by Congress and signed into law by former President Donald Trump in late December.
In the last year, housing experts and advocates have grown concerned that the pandemic would lead to a wave of evictions as more renters lose wages and fall behind on rent. Tens of thousands of evictions have been filed in the last year in metro Atlanta alone, but a federal moratorium is stopping evictions from taking place if they are based solely on non-payment of rent.
That moratorium is set to expire at the end of March.
Renters can visit www.georgiarentalassistance.ga.gov to apply for the relief program.