A state program has distributed more than $890-thousand dollars to mid-Michigan households struggling to pay rent and utilities due to pandemic related hardships. The funds come from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority.
The state launched the COVID Emergency Rental Assistance program in March to help Michiganders pay for rent and utilities. It replaced the Eviction Diversion Program, which had been offering rental assistance since last summer.
Rawley Van Fossen, the executive director of the Capital Area Housing Partnership, said they’ve been partnering with the state to help Ingham County residents secure these funds.
“Ensuring that there are direct financial assistance dollars made available to households who are struggling to make those timely rent payments, those timely utility payments, but are unable to do so because they've been affected by COVID," he said.
Van Fossen said the average payout for Ingham County residents is about $7,200 dollars per household.
"We're getting information about your income, we're getting information about what's your past rent, what do you pay in your monthly rent amount, and all of that then gets calculated to determine your total assistance including any future assistance you may be eligible for," he said.
So far, at least 58 households in Ingham County have received assistance and close to 400 households are waiting to have their applications reviewed. To apply to receive assistance, visit www.michigan.gov/mshda or call 517-332-4663.