Looks like I’m not the only one out here who needs help with rent right now. Judging by the search terms that are driving visitors to my site, it’s getting pretty rough for a lot of us. So I went poking around to see what I can see. The first thing I saw were a load of scams. Sites that want you to give them all your info so that you can be “instantly approved” for rental help “loans” at high interest, web pages full of misinformation, or info so vague it may as well not exist. What really worries me about these sites is that folks are hurting so much they’re giving away all of their private information right there in the comments section. Just waiting to be snatched up by an identity thief.
Don’t do that.
The first thing you need to know is what a providers requirements are. If you’re going to ask for help from a community or government organization, some of them have hoops to jump through. Some may be restricted to certain demographics (women, Latinos, etc). They may require that you have a “pay or vacate” notice. It’s really important to ask. It keeps you from running around randomly.
It’s hard when your back is against the wall to take a big breath and steady yourself, but it’s really important you do it. Now, drop below the fold and let’s see who helps folks out.
Most importantly, 211. 211 is a national database of resources for everything social services. Food, housing, rental help. If it’s in your city, 211 will connect you to it. Type in your zip code here.
The Salvation Army. I know they get a bad rap for the national office’s discriminatory stance against LGBT people. But I’ve gone to them over and over again in two different cities as an openly trans person and never been turned away. The thing with the Army is that local offices are very different from national. Start at this page here, and enter your zip code to find your local office.
Hud.gov has a list of links here.
I could give you more, but really, 211 is going to be your best bet. I work from 211 when I need help. Get on them, and good luck!