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Rental and Utility Relief Program Increases Eligibility Income Limit

HONOLULU -- In an effort to expand access to rental and utility relief, the City and County of Honolulu and its community partners are increasing the income limit for the Rental and Utility Relief Program to households at or below 80% of Oʻahu's area median income, starting immediately.

Households can apply at until the program receives 10,000 total applications this round. The program has already received 7,000 applications from households at or below 50% of the area median income.

"Since the program opened for applications in April, we have prioritized people and families most in danger of losing their housing. After helping those hit hardest by the pandemic, we want to expand access to rent and utility relief to more of our neighbors on Oʻahu," said Executive Director of the Office of Economic Revitalization Amy Asselbaye.

To date, the program has helped more than 3,300 vulnerable households with $25 million in approved rent and utility help.

At the increased income limit, a household of four people earning up to $100,700 a year in total and demonstrating financial hardship from the pandemic can qualify for support. The previous 50% income limit was $62,950 a year for a family of four. A household can still qualify if at least one member has been unemployed for 90 days preceding the application.

Households making more than the 80% income limit should not apply. Those applications will be rejected and delay processing applications from households in need.

The program is funded with federal COVID-19 relief funds. Federal guidelines allow for supporting households at or below the 80% income limit.

A complete list of income limits per household and how to qualify for the program is in the Frequently Asked Questions document at People can call (808) 768-CITY (2489) if they still have questions. The City's call center is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., seven days a week.

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