Letters to the Editor

Rental assistance available to Vermonters

Aug 11 2022, 6:14 AM

Financial hardships brought on by Covid-19 have exacerbated Vermont's housing affordability crisis. However, many Vermonters are unaware that the American Rescue Plan Act provided funds for the Vermont Emergency Rental Assistance Program, called VERAP.

VERAP assistance can cover future rent payments, future utility payments, as well as rental and utility arrearages for up to 18 months. Assistance is administered through the Vermont State Housing Authority.

This is NOT a low-income housing program. Rather, there is broad eligibility, with most households earning 80% or less of the area median income eligible. Your area median income is county-dependent, ranging from $85,800 for a four-person household in Chittenden County to $68,550 for a four-person household in Bennington County.

The funds for VERAP have already been appropriated and the state must distribute the funds or they will be recouped by the federal government. The Vermont State Housing Authority recommends that all Vermont renters apply.

The housing authority’s outreach team will be hosting free events throughout the state to assist with the application process.

Michael Reinhardt