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California rental assistance programs.

Struggling tenants in California can get help from local rent assistance programs. There are resources available from several government as well as non-profit type agencies. While the goal is to provide some form of direct financial help to assist with paying back rent or maybe an upcoming security deposit, the fact is that funds are limited. There may be many instances in which other options (including mediation, free legal aid, etc.) are explored.

Find as well as select a county below to get more information on emergency housing, long term rent programs, and other aid. Or there are also statewide resources available, including from the Salvation Army in California. There are also some welfare type programs in the state that help with rent, and one of the main ones is Cal Works Homeless Assistance Prevention programs. This is a grant as well as cash loan based program which is mostly for tenants that are in or near poverty or those on other public assistance, including food stamps.

Funds for paying rent are also available to a wide variety of applicants. There is assistance for immigrants, migrant farm-workers, Spanish speakers, Koreans, and others who live in the diverse state of California. As regardless of age, race, religion, or disability, the cost of housing in California is expensive, and many people need some rent and/or deposit assistance. But there are always income requirements in place.

As far as federal government resources, or when homelessness or an eviction is imminent (or someone is homeless now) then the California homeless prevention and rehousing programs may be able to assist. They offer everything from rent or security deposit help to money to pay a storage fee, funds for lease applications fees, and free legal aid in housing court. Another major one is income based apartments or housing, and that rent help comes from the California section 8 housing choice vouchers.

For more information on local resources in your city or town, select a county below. It will provide a number of agencies to apply at for emergency or even long term rent assistance, ranging from churches to charities, non-profits, social serviced groups, and others. Staff will answer questions as well as provide applications.




Local County wide rent assistance programs in California

Alameda County

Butte County

Contra Costa County

Fresno County

Kern County

Los Angeles County

Marin County

Merced County

Monterey County

Napa County

Orange County

Placer County





Sacramento County

San Bernardino County

San Francisco County

San Diego County

San Joaquin County

San Mateo County

Santa Clara County

Santa Cruz County

Shasta and Tehama County

Solano County

Tulare County

Ventura County


By Jon McNamara

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