As the holidays approach, the U.S. Department of the Treasury has provided St. Johns County with $2.15 million of emergency rental assistance to help low-income renters catch up on past due rent and utilities, specifically as they recover from housing instability experienced during and after the pandemic.
St. Johns County Emergency Rental Assistance (SJC ERA) can provide qualified households with up to 18 months of total assistance, including back rent and utilities, and up to three months of future assistance. Qualified renters in the middle of an eviction proceeding get expedited assistance. Registration for the program is open for tenants and landlords at sjc-era.com.
St. Johns County engaged Capital Access Inc., a grants management consultant, to serve as program manager for SJC ERA. Capital Access processed 18,000 grants for rent, mortgage and small business assistance during the pandemic for counties and cities in Florida and Pennsylvania.
Capital Access provides a team of experienced case managers who can help tenants and landlords throughout the application process. Online applications are available by going to sjc-era.com.
"Once an application is complete and the grant agreement is executed, we can issue payment directly to the landlord within 48 hours," Capital Access CEO Jeremey Newberg said. "Many renters still face financial challenges that started during the pandemic. SJC ERA can help them catch up on past-due rent and utilities. Landlords benefit because they can recover past due rent, which helps the overall St. Johns County economy."
The county set a goal to expend 100% of the rental assistance grants by the end of 2023. Tenants and landlords are encouraged to apply at sjc-era.com while funds remain available.
How the program works:
Summary of Eligibility Criteria:
Applicants get the highest priority for processing if:
There are members of the household who are children under 18 years old or seniors over the age of 60.
Residents are encouraged to apply early as funds are limited. Application specialists are available to assist. People with language and/or physical challenges can request assistance with application submission.
Online applications are available by going to sjc-era.com. If an applicant needs help with the application, has a language or accessibility need, or has questions, email email@example.com or call 904-204-8989.