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For Tenants

How does the rental assistance program work?

The City of Houston is providing rental assistance for past-due rent to help eligible and approved tenants who are in danger of eviction.  This program is administered by Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.  To receive assistance, your landlord must agree to participate in the program.

How do I apply for rental assistance?

Call 713-874-6609 to apply. If you’re eligible, you will be provided with a link to the application.

Who can apply for rental assistance?

You must live within the City of Houston, earn less than 50% of the AMI (average median income) and have an active eviction citation (with a court case number).

2023 AMI (Area Median Income)

Note: the program utilizes the AMI (Area Median Income) rates established by HUD (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development) for the 2023 program year.

Household Size50% Annual AMI Income

What documents will I need to have ready when I apply?

You will need to provide proof of these things: identification, residence (address), public benefits or income, and evidence that you are currently in eviction court, have received a notice to vacate from your landlord, or are otherwise behind on rent. The complete list is in this document.

How can I check the status of my application?

Click on the yellow Check my status box at the top right of the webpage, then enter your case number. You may also use your cell phone number or email address to search for your case.

When will my application be processed?

The program uses a prioritization process to ensure that individuals who have the highest need (based on financial situation and eviction court date) are served first.  Read more here.

Who can I contact to apply, or to ask questions?

Call our hotline at 713-874-6609. Call Center hours are 9 am – 5 pm Monday-Friday.

You can report concerns about the program to the Client Response Team. They will investigate your concerns and get back to you.

What if I need legal help with my eviction case?

Please see the Resources page for free legal assistance options.

How much rental assistance can I receive?

Depending on eligibility and the availability of funding, you may receive up to 18 months of rental assistance from the program.  If your household has already received rental assistance from the program, this would go towards the 18-month maximum.

Can I receive rental assistance for past rent if I moved out or was evicted?

You must currently reside at a property to receive rental assistance for it. You can only apply for rental assistance if you are facing eviction but still living at the property.

How will I receive the rental assistance payments?

Your landlord must agree to the terms and conditions of the program before payments can be made. If you and your landlord agree to participate, payments can be made to either the landlord or the tenant, depending on agreed-upon preference.

How do I withdraw my application?

If you no longer need rental assistance, please contact update@houstonharrishelp.org to inform the program.

For Landlords

How do I enroll as a landlord?

First, check the landlord directory to make sure you aren’t enrolled already; see if your profile is up to date and the information is correct. If you’re not enrolled, complete the landlord enrollment form. Only properties within the City of Houston are eligible for consideration for assistance.

Where can I log in to the landlord portal?

A portal is available for landlords to review payments, view cases in progress and make edits to your account. You can visit the landlord portal here. Your username is your email.  If you would like to request access to the landlord portal, email landlord.enrollment@catholiccharities.org

I reset my password on the portal but never got an email. What should I do?

Landlords can reset passwords by clicking on “Forgot your password?” on the Landlord Portal sign in page. A password reset link is sent to the email address registered for the property company.

If you don’t receive an email, check your spam and junk folders for password reset instructions. Additional Landlord Portal assistance requests can be directed to landlord.enrollment@catholiccharities.org.

How can I change my contact information?

Most landlord or property company information can be modified directly on the Landlord Portal once you are signed in. If you need more help to update the landlord or property company information, send a request to landlord.enrollment@catholiccharities.org.

How can I check the status of my tenant’s application?

Visit houstonharrishelp.org and click on Check my status. You will need your tenant’s consent and case number or contact information to search for the application. You can also see your tenant’s status in your landlord portal profile.

I don’t see my tenant’s application in the landlord portal. What should I do?

The landlord portal updates in real time with the application processes. If a tenant does not appear on your profile, this could be happening for a couple reasons:

  • Your tenant may have applied without listing you as a landlord or chosen the incorrect landlord. Until we review this case and link it to your profile, it will not show up in the portal.

There may be duplicate landlord accounts for you/your property and your tenant is using a different one than you are checking.

For further assistance or information, please contact landlord.enrollment@catholiccharities.org.

I’m a new property owner. The former owner was enrolled in the program. How can my tenants receive assistance now?

If the property is under new management with different tax ID information, the new ownership and management will need to enroll again. You can enroll again with a new company account in the “Landlords” section.  There is information about enrollment and a “Continue to Enrollment” button on the righthand side. The enrollment application is here. Make sure your tenants select the new landlord or property name when applying.

My tenant received rental assistance directly, but I never received it. What should I do?

If the tenant received direct assistance, this should have been paid to you, the landlord, as rent. If you did not receive this payment from your tenant, this is a violation of the program terms and conditions. You can report the concern here.

I received two rental assistance payments for the same month. What should I do?

You may need to return the duplicate payment. For more information on returning a payment, please email rentalrefunds@catholiccharities.org

I don’t want to be in the program anymore. How do I opt out?

You can opt out of the program at any time by emailing landlord.enrollment@catholiccharities.org.