Homeless and eviction prevention programs in Summit County help both struggling tenants as well families that are seeking a new home or an affordable apartment to live in. A number of social service agencies in Akron and nearby towns partner together as part of a service known as Home Again. Together they try to provide low income renters that are facing an eviction with everything from grants to counseling and other support.
Several non-profits in the region focus on helping tenants that are threatened with an imminent eviction or even homeowners that are in arrears on their mortgage payments. Anyone that is threatened with losing their current housing, either due to an eviction or foreclosure, may be assisted.
When in an emergency, the first call for screening should be too Info Line. This clearinghouse will then direct the applicant to a local church or charity, such as H.M. Life Opportunity Services or Humility of Mary Housing. This different groups will then process the application for an eviction assistance program.
Any help is only for low income families, even including those close to living in poverty. The tenants income needs to be at or below 50% of the median income in Summit County Ohio. They also need to lack savings, assets, or family members that can help. Another key criteria is that eviction help is only given to renters that an income that allows them to pay their bills and rent on their own, once the aid ends.
The Akron homeless prevention services due require the tenant to either have, or be at imminent risk of eviction because of either unpaid rent or utility bills. Another criteria is if the landlord's property has been condemned by local housing regulators, and in those cases the family may be resettled. When a family or individual, such as a single mother, has had an unexpected significant loss of income, this too may qualify them for a grant.
Tenants are more likely to qualify for cash aid for their rental arrears. This is more likely than a homeowner, as the cost involved to dealing with a home-ownership issue is greater. Since the aid distributed by non-profits that are part of the Home Again program is not significant, it is very costly to bring a mortgage current.
When found eligible for eviction assistance, families may be given the following. Summit County clients can be provided money in an emergency for rent due to the landlord or other housing expenses, including water or heating bills. The case management process, which will also be arranged Info Line affiliated agencies, will offer legal aid too and anything else that will help the tenant overcome barriers.
The Summit County Rapid Re-Housing program is used. The services will help the homeless, with a priority given to people with a stable source of income but that have had a one-time crisis. When a family has just been evicted, this fact may as well give them the support they need.
One of the key participants to this program is the Summit County Children Services Department. If a resident is not qualified there, then other groups (such as the Salvation Army or Humility of Mary Housing) may arrange this. A combination of funds and guidance will try to minimize the amount of time that a client needs to be in a shelter, or that they are homeless.
All applicants need to have exhausted all other options available to them. They need to have no financial resources for their security deposits or housing needs. Also, the eviction needs to have been caused by some action that was outside of their control, and that they did not create. Additional support is for victims of domestic violence in Summit County, people leaving a transitional housing program, or those living in cars or parks in Akron.
The government grants from rapid rehousing can pay for the housing search process which can be expensive. This means that if someone needs a legal review of the lease agreement, this can be paid for. The actual moving expenses, ranging from application fees to a landlord to a security deposit or short term storage fees, may also be covered. Other financial aid may be provided too.
Akron and Summit County residents can also use the government funded resources of case management. This will give clients the skills they need to prevent a future financial crisis or eviction from the new apartment. In fact, this is often critical to the entire rapid rehousing process.
For more information, and to start the intake process for homeless as well as eviction prevention, the main phone number is 330-376-6660, or Akron based Home Again can be reached at 330.615.0566.
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