Texas becomes first in the nation to provide $1 billion in rent assistance

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Texas Governor Greg Abbott (Photo by Lynda M. Gonzalez-Pool/Getty Images)

AUSTIN, Texas (KETK) – Gov. Greg Abbott, along with the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA), announced Thursday morning that Texas has become the first state in the nation to achieve $1 billion in rental assistance.

The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly taken its toll financially on almost everyone. For renters in particular, it has pushed many to the brink of eviction.

Thankfully for Texans, the $1 billion in relief funds has been distributed to over 174,000 households and reaching 95% of Texas counties. Abbott also indicated that an additional $52 million is already committed to being paid.

“Crossing the $1 billion mark shows we were able to address a great and pressing need that is still present here in our state, but it’s important we continue to work vigorously to get help out as quickly as possible.”

Bobby Wilkinson, TDHCA Executive Director

By the numbers, these are the milestones that have been achieved:

  • More than $1 billion has been paid to more than 174,000 households.
  • The program is reaching all corners of Texas, providing assistance to households in 241 out of 254 Texas counties – that’s a 95% reach of the vast Texas territory.
  • More than 82% of the households served are either extremely low or low income, falling at or below 50% of their area median income.
  • The program is prioritizing people at risk of eviction – more than 15,000 applicants have had their evictions stopped and removed from their credit records and have received more than $126 million in assistance.
  • TDHCA provides a public dashboard to report on the program’s performance at TexasRentRelief.com.

Texans can apply for the program by calling 1-833-9TX-RENT (1-833-989-7368) or submitting it online at TexasRentRelief.com. The call center is open Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. To qualify, households must be at or below 80% of the area median income as well as meet other criteria.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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