Home / Coronavirus (COVID-19) / COVID-19: Resources for Renters


Resources for renters

The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) provides resources from across the government to help you during the coronavirus pandemic. Visit the CFPB website to learn more.

Get free housing advice

HUD-certified housing counselors are available to help you with your housing situation, discuss your options, and direct you to other local resources.

Call 1-800-569-4287 or find a housing counselor.




Yes. Rent payments are still due. If your income has gone down or COVID-19 has affected your financial situation and made it hard to pay rent, contact your landlord right away. Reach out early to discuss your potential options for relief. You may be eligible for financial assistance through a state or local program, or your landlord may know of other helpful resources.




Communicate with your landlord


If you’re having trouble paying rent, contact your landlord as soon as possible to discuss your payment options. Here are some tips for talking with your landlord:

  • Be open about your financial situation. Share how your income has been affected by COVID-19 or other difficulties. You shouldn’t be required to provide financial documents as proof.
  • Be clear about your needs and keep in mind your landlord may be struggling financially too.
  • Mention any resources and options you’ve found that could be helpful.
  • Explain how your family would be impacted by a loss of housing, even if temporary.
  • Ask for flexible payment arrangements or payment plans.
  • Keep a written record of your conversations, including any email and text conversations. Keep track of the date and time you spoke.


Find emergency rental assistance


Find an Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program

State and local programs are distributing billions of dollars in rental assistance through Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs. ERA programs help you pay rent and utilities during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing funding to states, territories, local governments, and tribes. This money may be used to pay landlords and utility providers on your behalf. You can apply to an ERA program if you experienced a financial hardship due to COVID-19 and need help staying in your home.

Note: Both tenants and landlords (acting on behalf of a tenant) can apply. ERA funds will help you to stay in your current home or find new rental housing.

You can search for an Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program on the U.S. Department of Treasury’s website by state, territory, or tribe. Note: You should also check with your city or county for additional ERA programs, since some may not be listed on the Treasury’s website. For more detailed information on ERA programs and the rental assistance available to you, visit CFPB’s website.



Search for other state or local protections

If you cannot find an ERA program in your area, call 211 (a free, nationwide service that connects callers to local resources) or find other rental assistance programs in your state.

Also, your state may have placed more limitations on evictions. Visit the Eviction Lab, a non-profit organization, to learn about state and local eviction protections.



Learn about income recertification if you live in HUD-assisted (public) housing or receive HUD housing vouchers

If you get rental help from HUD, you can report any decreases in wages, job hours, and family income (a process called “income recertification”). Reporting this information can temporarily decrease income-based rent payments or increase housing subsidies.

Ask for "income recertification" from your property manager or landlord as soon as possible. Talk to them to learn how to certify your income and if any change in rent could be applied to previous months. Federal stimulus payments are not included in your income calculation. Find more help on HUD's eviction prevention resources page.





Find state or local protections


Your state, county, or city may have stopped or limited evictions. Visit the Eviction Lab, a non-profit organization, to learn about state and local eviction protections. Eviction Lab is run by an independent non-profit organization and HUD cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information on the site.

You can also find resources in your community, including housing, shelter, food pantries, health clinics, and clothing on HUD's Find Shelter tool.




If you are at risk of being homeless due to eviction or in need of transitional housing, HUD partners may be able to work with you on a long-term plan and connect you with resources for success. Contact a homeless service provider in your community who can help HUD’s homeless service provider contact list.

You can also find resources in your community, including housing, shelter, food pantries, health clinics, and clothing on HUD's Find Shelter tool.

If you are at risk of homeless or currently experiencing homelessness:




Yes. HUD is still completing physical property and unit inspections during the pandemic.


Key things about inspections during the COVID-19 pandemic


  • In-person inspections increased in June 2021. HUD had paused in-person inspections at the beginning of the pandemic. For more information, download the Property and Unit Inspections flyer (PDF). The flyer is also available in 19 other languages.
  • You can refuse an inspection of your unit. Tell your housing provider or inspector of any health-related concerns you have.
  • There are COVID-19 safety protocols in place. Inspectors will practice safe distancing and wear personal protective equipment (PPE). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) most recent guidance informs these protocols.


What are HUD inspections?


HUD provides affordable homes through several rental assistance programs. These programs include public housing, multifamily housing, and housing choice vouchers (Section 8).

These HUD-assisted properties are inspected to make sure they are decent, safe, and sanitary. HUD’s Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) sets the inspection standards and oversees inspections. These inspections are known as REAC physical inspections.

Learn more about HUD unit and property inspections.




Scam artists often offer fake help to people in crises. They do this to steal your money or personal information. Be wary of people selling access to government goods and services. Always check the legitimacy of offers and don’t feel pressured to “take immediate action.” The best way to protect yourself is to say "no" if anyone contacts you and asks for your personal information such as your Social Security, bank account, Medicare ID, or driver’s license numbers.

Learn about COVID-19 scams on CFPB's website. This includes scams on the COVID-19 vaccine, fake charities, false unemployment claims, and people posing as someone in need, among other types of fraud.




Federal Resources:

Non-governmental resources:

Federal Resources:

  • Contact a homeless service provider in your community. They help people experiencing homelessness or those at risk of homelessness.
  • You can also find resources in your community, such as housing, shelter, food pantries, health clinics, and clothing on HUD's Find Shelter tool.
  • If you receive grant funding from HUD, find a community development or affordable housing contact for help with HUD's programs.
  • Search the LGBTQ Homelessness page for information on HUD's Equal Access Rule, which requires all HUD funded housing (including shelters) to provide services without discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The site also offers HUD partners training and resources to support LGBTQ-inclusive projects.

Non-governmental resources:

  • Search justshelter.org to find community organizations working to provide affordable housing, prevent eviction, and reduce family homelessness.
  • Housing discrimination: Federal law prohibits housing discrimination based on your race, color, national origin, religion, sex, family status, or disability. If you have been trying to buy or rent a home or apartment and you believe your rights have been violated, you can file a fair housing complaint.
  • Housing Choice Vouchers: File a Housing Choice Voucher complaint by calling 1-800-955-2232 or sending an email to Public Housing’s Customer Service at HUD-PIHRC@tngusa.net.
  • Bad landlords in federal housing: Many landlords have been fined or prevented from doing business with the federal government because they failed to provide safe and decent housing for the poor, while benefiting from taxpayer funds. Find out how to report a bad landlord.
  • Fraud, waste, and abuse: If you are aware of fraud, waste, and abuse in HUD programs and operations, report it to HUD’s Inspector General Hotline.

Federal Resources

Non-governmental Resources

  • Veteran’s Crisis Line: Call 1-800-273-8255 and press “1” to talk confidentially if you have thoughts of hurting yourself or thoughts of suicide. Available 24/7 to



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Page last updated: October 27, 2021