Rent relief program helping renters, landlords statewide

Published: Aug. 6, 2021 at 10:16 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - While thousands of Texas families are continuing to struggle to keep a roof over their heads, there may be an opportunity for some hope through a statewide rent relief program.

“They have forms there for landlords, forms there for tenants and people from either side of the fence work to try to get this mutual problem dealt with,” said John Grieger, managing attorney with Legal Aid of Northwest Texas.

Three Wichita Falls organizations, Faith Mission, Nortex Regional Planning Commission and Legal Aid of Northwest Texas, have partnered together to spread the word that there is help for families that need to pay for rent and for landlords who have yet to receive rent pay. The help comes through a $1.3 billion coronavirus relief bill.

“For the landlords, it’s an income problem,” said Grieger. “For the tenants, it’s a housing problem and a debt problem and an expense problem.”

It’s relief that Grieger said he hopes to be able to provide through paperwork filing services before families are forced out of their homes.

“A tenant is given notice to vacate,” said Grieger. “After that, there is a lawsuit filed which is filed in the justice court sometimes people call it the JP court and the tenant has a chance to appear in court.”

While staff in the Nortex Regional Planning Commission have their own programs to help those having a tough time paying their bills.

“Emergency solutions grant, we can assist with rent and utilities and moving expenses,” said Diane Morgan, director of housing services at the Nortex Regional Planning Commission.

While both relief programs have certain income restrictions for receiving those funds.

“Anyone could lose their job, they still have these bills for which they are responsible for,” said Morgan.

Grieger said he has two families that have already made appointments to sit down and get help filling out paperwork later this month.

For tenants and landlords needing help to complete application, in-person appointments will be available on August 17th and August 19th from 9:00a.m -11:00a.m. Applicants may schedule appointments by calling 940- 723-5542.

For more on Texas rent relief, click here. Or call Diane Morgan at 940-322-5281 ext. 124 Nortex Regional Planning Commission. Steve Sparks at 940-723-5663 The Wichita Falls Faith Mission.

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