Emergency Rental Assistance Program

The St. Joseph County Online Application Portal is currently accepting new applications. 

Because funds are limited, there is no guarantee of assistance.  Assistance will not be awarded after the funds have been exhausted 

St. Joseph County’s Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) is designed to decrease evictions, increase housing stability, and prevent homelessness by helping tenants whose income has been negatively impacted by COVID-19 with rent and utility payments. 

ERA can provide eligible tenants with twelve (12) up to fifteen (15) months, for housing stability, of rental assistance. Utility assistance may also be provided to qualifying applicants for past due utilities (electric, gas, water, sewer, and trash) and home energy (fuel oil, wood, coal, pellets, and propane) expenses.

The St. Joseph County Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program may provide temporary rental and utility assistance for applicants who meet all of the following;
  • Are currently a resident of St. Joseph County;
  • Name appears on the rental lease;
  • Income is less than 80% of the median household income in St. Joseph County; and
  • Demonstrate housing instability or risk of homelessness due to COVID-19
Applicants MUST meet one of the following three requirements and provide documents as proof.
  1. A member of the applicant's household has received unemployment benefits since April 1, 2020
  2. The applicant's household has experienced a reduction in household income due to an involuntary job layoff, reduced work hours, or reduced pay
  3. The applicant's household incurred significant costs or experienced a financial hardship due to COVID-19

Emergency Rental Assistance Logo

Priority Status

Applicants that indicate one of the following conditions during the initial application phase will receive priority application review.

1)  Applicants that indicate they have received a notice of eviction.

2)  Applicants that indicate a household member is unemployed at the time the application has been submitted and has been for ninety (90) days prior to the date of submission of the application; or

3)  Applicants with a household income at or below 50% of HUD’s published Fiscal Year Income Limits for 2020,