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Maryland rental and housing assistance.

The state of Maryland runs a few rent assistance and homeless prevention programs for the low income, seniors, and people who are struggling with paying their rent or who need funds for security deposits. The programs have two main goals. One is to offer emergency rent assistance to prevent homelessness, and the second is to help people find and pay for new, safe, and affordable housing or apartments.

The first resource is known as the Homelessness Prevention Program (HPP). This particular service does not provide cash to those tenants that qualify. Assistance instead gives renters non-monetary assistance and advice with the goal of preventing evictions.

What will happen is that counselors from the program will work with and support tenants and renters to prevent evictions and stop homelessness in Maryland. Counselors from the state will offer short-term mediation, free advice, and case management to both renters and landlords. The HPP program will also help individuals and families who are at risk for eviction stay in their apartments or rental homes. The primary objective is to offer households early intervention services and case management to avoid a possible eviction from their home.

People who are in imminent danger of becoming homeless or who are currently without a home to live in may be able to receive help from the Maryland Housing Counselor Program (HCP). Get help with locating safe and affordable low income housing and apartments. Individuals can get assistance as they try to secure and also maintain permanent housing or apartments. Counselors from the state may also be able to help these families establish adequate credit references, which are needed in today’s world, and help people apply for subsidized housing or public assistance.

Among services offered, counselors who are part of the HCP can also help individual’s access local private and public resources for paying security deposits. There may also be grant programs in Maryland that can help with the first and last month’s rent, utility and heating payments, or donations of furniture. Learn about local churches, charities, and non-profit organizations that also partner with HCP. Counselors will work to develop and maintain relationships with landlords, which will often involve paving the way for people with reference or credit problems to obtain permanent housing.




Other housing and rental assistance may include helping low income individuals and families locate more affordable housing after a rent increase from their landlord. The amount of financial aid available in the state for this issue is quite extensive. For example, counselors can even help people find another apartment located near a bus route or train station that is more suitable for a new place of employment.

In many of these instances, clients of the Housing Counselor Program (HCP) may be able to remain in their current apartments or housing before being evicted. As a result of this program, local non-profit public and private agencies and charities do not have to make outlays or pay additional expenses for sheltering these households. Dial (410) 767-7285 to learn more about this program.

Another option is the state of Maryland Rental Allowance Program (RAP). This can offer emergency rental assistance for struggling as well as low income families who are currently homeless, who are facing an eviction, or who have an emergency housing need. The monthly payments paid out for the back rent due or housing expenses are fixed amounts.

The exact amount will usually depend on the number of members of the family and the exact location of the rental housing unit in the State. Another key factor of RAP is the tenant’s total household income. Payments for rent and housing expenses can be received for up to 12 months, and the payments may even be able to be extended under special circumstances. Read more on MD RAP rent program.





Applying for resources in Maryland

The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development runs many of these programs. They can provide information on them, and help people apply for these or other emergency rent and housing assistance. Call 1-800-756-0119.

By Jon McNamara

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