COVID-19 Resources for Renters

The information provided here is general in nature and is not intended to be legal or health advice. It is designed to help renters understand the impact of COVID-19, and some helpful resources.

COVID 19 Housing Assistance Program - The Deadline to Apply was December 7, 2020.

The COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program is no longer accepting applications. Administrators will continue to review assistance requests in the online system that have a "Verification" and “Submitted” status following the December 7 deadline. If your status was "In Progress" before the application deadline, you can still access your online account but your assistance request has been withdrawn. To check your status, log into your account here. You can sign up for Minnesota Housing's COVID-19 Housing Assistance Program eNews list if you want to receive program updates.

Emergency Assistance for Counties and Cities

Some Minnesota counties have emergency assistance funds to assist renters who have been financially harmed by COVID-19.

Counties

Carver County
Hennepin County 
(applications are due by Friday, December 11, 2020 at 4 p.m.)
Olmsted County
Ramsey County
Scott County
St Louis County
Washington County

Southeastern Minnesota Multi-County Housing and Redevelopment Authority
(including Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Houston, Wabasha, and Winona)

Is your county not listed here? They may still offer assistance. Contact them to find out.

Cities

Minneapolis (Coronavirus gap funding)
St Paul (Coronavirus bridge funds)
White Bear Lake

With College Virtual, are students stuck with lease?
In addition to the question about college housing, this article provides helpful information about other restrictions under the Governor's Executive Orders.

Mediation Services

Are you struggling to effectively resolve challenging problems with your landlord? Check out the free services offered by Community Mediation Minnesota. Learn more

COVID-19 Housing Court Procedures

Learn how eviction cases are being handled during the pandemic. COVID-19 Housing Court Procedures

COVID-19 Rental Webinars

Tenant legal advocacy group Homeline has been producing a series of webinars about current legal issues that Minnesota renters are facing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Recordings are available here.

Evictions

Due to COVID-19, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz issued an executive order that stops evictions, lease terminations, and Writs of Recovery during the peacetime emergency. The state of Minnesota is still under the peacetime emergency, so the eviction moratorium still applies. Learn More: FAQ Executive Order.

COVID Community Connectors

COVID Community Coordinators (CCCs) are community-based organizations that connect Minnesota’s diverse communities to COVID testing and resources. Learn more.

MN Energy Assistance  Program (EAP)

The state's Energy Assistance Program (EAP) helps pay for home heating costs and furnace repairs for income-qualified households.

Unemployment Insurance

Unemployment Insurance Were your work hours reduced or eliminated? Apply for unemployment insurance. Apply online in English, Hmong, Somali or Spanish.  Do you speak a language other than English, Hmong, Somali, or Spanish? If so, call 651-296-3644 to start the application process.

Food

  • Find food shelves and free meals near you: Hunger Solutions
  • Minneapolis Public Schools is providing meals for its students. Learn more
  • St. Paul Public Schools is providing meals for its students. Learn more
  • Do you need long-term food benefits (SNAP)? Apply here 

Utilities

Xcel Energy will waive late fees and stop service disconnections if they are because of a COVID-19 hardship. Call 1-800-895-4999 for more information.
CenterPoint Energy will waive late fees and stop service disconnections if they are because of a COVID-19 hardship. Call 1-800-245-2377 for more information.

Internet

  • USI and Comcast are expanding access to the internet in the City of Minneapolis. Learn more
  • Low cost computer and internet resources. Learn more

Communication with your Landlord

If you are struggling to pay rent, or will have this problem soon, here are some tips for communicating with your landlord.


Talk
to your landlord right away when the problem occurs.
Be honest with them about your current income situation. How has the spread of COVID-19 impacted your work?
Consider discussing the resources/assistance types that you’ve sought thus far.
Explain how vulnerable your family will be. How many members of the family will be impacted by the loss of housing?
Find out what other people in similar positions are doing with this landlord or with others. Discuss the Minnesota Multi Housing Association's 'shelter in place' guidelines.
Ask about payment arrangements.

Your landlord is likely experiencing a high degree of stress and concern over the current circumstances as well. Strive to ensure that your communication with them is as clear and calm as possible. Document your conversations.