Zero Balance Project: Key Facts & Figures
The Zero Balance Project allowed rental property owners to apply for Federal Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) on behalf of renters impacted by the pandemic. Following the first round of pandemic rental assistance programs funded by the Federal CARES Act in 2020, local governments received unprecedented Federal funds to help impacted families remain current on rent in 2021-2022. Family Housing Fund was approached by Dakota County, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, the City of Minneapolis, and the City of Saint Paul to administer over $31 million of pooled ERA funds to COVID-impacted households and individuals through the Zero Balance Project. Family Housing Fund worked with CliftonLarsonAllen (CLA) and HousingLink to design and administer the program in partnership with the local governments. A key objective of the Zero Balance Project was to create another entry point to rent assistance and transfer some of the burden of the application process from renters to landlords, understanding that landlords are well-positioned to provide the necessary documentation for an application.
This brief describes the key results of the Zero Balance Project; it is not a comparative analysis to other ERA programs or an evaluation of the Zero Balance Project. Data in this report is based on $29.675 million in disbursements made as of February 22, 2022, a figure that constitutes about 92% of the overall Zero Balance Project budgeted funding