City’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program reopens with new funds

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (ADAMS) – On Wednesday, the City of Fort Wayne’s Community Development Division announced that the Emergency Rental Assistance program has opened up the application process to allow people who have already received assistance to reapply for additional rent and utility support.

To date, more than 1,450 households have received $4.9 million through the Emergency Rental Assistance program. Another $500,000 has been approved and funds will be disbursed in the coming weeks.

The Emergency Rental Assistance program was established to help those struggling to pay rent and utility bills because of challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. There is still money available to Fort Wayne residents in need and applications are still being accepted.

“I am proud that we have been able to keep more than 1,450 households from experiencing eviction and potential homelessness,” said Kelly Lundberg, Director of the City’s Office of Housing and Neighborhood Services. “As the end of the eviction moratorium nears, we will continue to work to provide assistance to renters and landlords.”

The program is only available to applicants who rent apartments, homes or other residential units within Fort Wayne City limits. For more information and to access the application, go to www.fwcares.org or call 317-552-1463. Program staff will work down the list of applicants to help those who are eligible until there is no more available funding.

In order to qualify for the program, residents must:

Rent within Fort Wayne City limits
Have a household income at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI), which is $57,500 or less for a family of four
Be experiencing financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic

Eligible assistance includes:

Past due rental payments and up to 3 months of future payments.
Past due utility bills (electricity, gas, water and sewer, trash removal and other energy costs, such as fuel oil) for up to 12 months.
Current utility bills (electricity, gas, water and sewer, trash removal and other energy costs, such as fuel oil) for the current month only.

The City received $8.1 million in funding for the Emergency Rental Assistance program from the U.S. Department of the Treasury which is administered by the City of Fort Wayne’s Office of Housing & Neighborhood Services (OHNS).

Brightpoint, Catholic Charities, Lutheran Social Services, and Baker Tilly U.S. have partnered with the City to provide help to those who need additional assistance applying. Renters may contact these organizations for help with the application process.