Oct 12, 2021

Resources for Households Impacted by COVID-19

In the midst of the COVID pandemic, many households are looking for help covering their basic needs. While the Family Housing Fund does not provide direct assistance to individuals, we have compiled a list of resources that can help during this challenging time. Please reach out to them directly, as Family Housing Fund is not able to take phone calls about these programs. We will continue to update this resource page to provide the most up-to-date and useful information.

Rental Assistance

If you are struggling to pay rent or utility payments, apply for rental assistance from the State of Minnesota (RentHelpMN): www.renthelpmn.org

You can also call or text 211 for more information or help navigating the rental assistance application.

Assistance for Landlords

If your renters are behind on payments and your properties are located in Dakota, Hennepin, or Ramsey Counties, you may be able to begin an application for rent assistance dollars on behalf of your renters through the Zero Balance Project.

Unemployment Insurance

If your work hours have been reduced or eliminated, apply for unemployment insurance from the State of Minnesota. Apply online in English, Spanish, Somali, or Hmong: www.uimn.org

You should sign up immediately if any of the situations listed on that page apply to you. They are asking that you sign up online, as phone lines are reserved for people who don’t have internet access or who don’t speak English or languages that have translations available on the state website. If this applies to you and you live in the Twin Cities area, call 651-296-3644. English, Spanish, Hmong, Somali languages are available. If you need another language, press 1 and follow the prompts to speak to a representative and request an interpreter.

Financial Assistance

If you need help paying for rent, food, or childcare, apply online for emergency and cash assistance, food benefits (SNAP), and childcare assistance: https://applymn.dhs.mn.gov/

You can also call the county where you live. Phone lines and language accessibility vary across counties.

  • Hennepin County: 612-596-1300
  • Ramsey County: 651-266-4884
  • Dakota County: 651-554-5611
  • Anoka County: 763-422-7200 (More information on Anoka County EA)
  • Washington County: 651-430-6459
  • Scott County: 952-496-8686
  • Carver County: 952-361-1600

Eviction Prevention

Minnesota’s eviction moratorium is now phasing out. As of October 12, renters can be evicted for nonpayment of rent. If you have a pending application for rent assistance, you cannot be evicted until June 2022. If you are behind on rent payments or you are having difficulty paying your rent, apply for assistance through RentHelpMN right away. Contact your landlord to let them know that you are seeking assistance. In Hennepin, Ramsey, and Dakota Counties, the Zero Balance Project is also available to landlords to apply for assistance on their renters’ behalf. It is important for property owners and renters to communicate with each other to navigate these programs.

If an eviction is filed against you for any reason, you must appear at the Court hearing, even if you have a pending application for rent assistance. More information is available from the Housing Justice Center and HOMELine. Legal help, mediation, and social services are available to help renters and landlords navigate the rent assistance process and prevent eviction. More information on legal help and mediation is below.

(Photo source: Minnesota Housing)

Food

Utilities

RentHelpMN – the State of Minnesota’s rental assistance program – will accept applications for past due utility bills, including gas, electric, water, and sewer. Apply as soon as you can. Regulated utility companies cannot disconnect your services if you have a pending application for energy assistance until April 30, 2022. Learn more via the Minnesota Citizen Utilities Board here.

If you are financially impacted by COVID-19, call your utility company and let them know. Some companies are making special arrangements for households impacted by the pandemic.

Legal Help

For legal help, call HOME Line’s tenant hotline: 612-728-5767

HOME Line’s services are available in English, Spanish, Somali, and Hmong.

For more information on the executive order to halt evictions, general advice on what to do if you cannot pay rent, and a sample letter to your landlord, visit HOME Line’s website.

Law Help MN has compiled FAQs and other legal resources related to COVID-19 here.

Mediation

Mediation can help renters and landlords come to an agreement that benefits all parties without the need for legal or court action. Reach out to mediators in your county:

Help for Homeowners

If you are a homeowner worried about your ability to pay your mortgage, reach out to your loan servicer as soon as possible, ask for the loss mitigation department, and discuss your options. You can find the number to call on your mortgage bill.

If you live in Hennepin County, you may be eligible for the Hennepin Homeownership Preservation Program (HHPP). HHPP offers foreclosure prevention advising and limited financial assistance. Learn more and see if you are eligible here, or call 651-236-8952.

The State of Minnesota is designing a COVID-19 homeownership assistance program called HomeHelpMN. Currently, the program is awaiting approval from the Department of Treasury and is not yet accepting applications. You can sign up to receive updates on the HomeHelpMN program by here.

A network of nonprofit Homeownership Advisors offers nonbiased advice to homeowners in Minnesota to help them keep their homes. Find a Homeownership Advisor offering services in your area.

More Health and Human Services

No matter where you live in Minnesota, call the United Way at 2-1-1 or visit www.211unitedway.org/


Didn’t find what you’re looking for? More information on housing help is here.

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