House Wake! COVID-19 Financial Assistance Program
Are you a renter struggling to make your monthly housing costs and utility payments? The House Wake! COVID-19 Financial Assistance Program may be able to help!
This program provides support to renters, landlords and utility companies to cover portions of rent and/or utility shortfalls resulting from a loss of income due to the pandemic. Assistance is available to renters for up to 12 months of past-due rent and unpaid utilities dating back to April 1, 2020.
Utilities covered by the program include:
- Internet Services
For households where financial assistance is not enough, House Wake! COVID-19 Financial Assistance Program is offering two additional services:
- Legal counsel, provided at no cost for tenants who cannot reach an agreement with their landlords or need legal counsel for mediation services; and
- Relocation Assistance, for households earning below 50% of area median income (AMI) unable to maintain payments for their current home and are at-risk of homelessness due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
How can you apply? Applications can be submitted by:
House Wake! Strategic Plan
House Wake! is a strategic plan to minimize the effects of COVID-19 on homeless and precariously house Wake County residents, while maximizing opportunities for positive long-term outcomes.
This eight month strategic plan uses and coordinates federal, state and local funding to address the COVID-19 crisis within our homeless and precariously housed population and aims to move the maximum number of individuals possible to housing stability.
House Wake! Phase I
Through the House Wake! Strategic Plan we have partnered with thirteen key community organizations to provide much needed services to vulnerable populations including individuals, families, youth, victims of domestic violence, and justice involved youth and adults. This partnership ensures that these populations have access to housing assistance, street outreach, temporary housing, and case management. These partners include:
- Oak City Cares: Oak City Cares serves people in jeopardy of or currently experiencing homelessness. Through the House Wake! Grant, OCC provides basic needs services, such as laundry, shower, telephone and bathroom access. In addition, OCC offers Street Outreach services to those unsheltered individuals without case management support. To access services, visit their location at 1430 S. Wilmington St., Raleigh, NC, 27603.
- The Raleigh/Wake Partnership to End and Prevent Homelessness: The HOUSE WAKE! Housing Navigation Unit connects housing opportunities and those that are in need of housing. They act as the liaison between the property managers and the homeless service providers. To access services, call 919-443-0096 or email [email protected].
- Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh: Catholic Charities is providing Rapid Re-Housing, Homeless Prevention and Emergency Financial Assistance for eligible families in Wake County. They work with families that have a household income less than 50% AMI (Average Monthly Income). To access services, call 919-790-8533 ext. 2530.
- InterAct: InterAct provides Wake County’s only emergency shelter program for individuals and families fleeing domestic and/or sexual violence. Through the House Wake! program they provide safe shelter and short-term assistance to families seeking permanent, safe and stable housing through the Hotels 2 Housing program. To access the Crisis Line which is open 24/7, call 919-828-7740 or visit interactofwake.org to webchat.
- Families Together: Families Together is helping to provide temporary shelter and housing stabilization services for families living in hotels affected by COVID. Additionally, through the House Wake! program they provide safe shelter and short-term assistance to families seeking permanent, safe, and stable housing through the Hotels 2 Housing program. Services are accessed through the House Wake! Access Hub at 919-443-0096 or [email protected].
- Haven House: Haven House Services provides Street Outreach and Rapid Re-housing to young adults age 16-24 years of age. Services include case management supportive services that consist of connections to basic needs, education, employment and life skills classes. To access services, call 919-820-3718 or email [email protected].
- Triangle Family Services: Triangle Family Services manages the Hotel 2 Housing Project which works with families living in hotels to maintain stable housing: case management and financial assistance for hotel families. Services are accessed through the House Wake! Access Hub at 919-443-0096 or [email protected].
- Passage Home: Passage Home is helps provide temporary shelter and housing stabilization services for families living in hotels affected by COVID. Families must earn 50% or below the Average Median Income. Referrals are taken through Coordinated Entry. Services are accessed through the House Wake! Access Hub at 919-443-0096 or [email protected].
- Capital Area Workforce Development: The House Wake! project is an expansion of the Wake Local Reentry Council (LRC) which provides transitional, emergency and permanent housing to individuals recently released from prison or jail, but not longer than 12 months. To access services, visit wakelrc.org and select “Make a Referral” tab.
- The Green Chair Project: The Green Chair Project is providing furnishings to 500 households in Wake County at no cost when housing is secured. Furniture selections are made online through Green Chair's website to provide ease of ordering along with contact-less delivery directly to the client. Clients are eligible to receive furniture along with bed, bath and kitchen essentials at no charge. Every child will receive a new bed and every infant, a crib also at no charge. Services are accessed through partnering agencies who provide a referral.
- Healing Transitions: Healing Transitions offers emergency shelter to 10 single women in Wake County. To access services, call 919-865-2558.
- The Salvation Army of Wake County: The Salvation Army of Wake County is providing Rapid Rehousing services and case management to 40 individuals and families in Wake Counties Hotels to Housing program. Services are accessed through the House Wake! Access Hub at 919-443-0096 or [email protected].
- Urban Ministries of Wake County: Urban Ministries' Helen Wright Center for Women provides Street Outreach, Emergency Shelter and Rapid Rehousing for single women experiencing homelessness in Wake County. To access services, call 919-256-2165 or visit 401 W. Cabarrus St, Raleigh, Monday-Friday from 1–6 p.m..
Wake County has committed nearly $11.5 million in federal funding for these efforts through Phase I of the House Wake! Strategic Plan, with more than $5.77 million of this funding available directly to partnering community agencies.
To access services, please visit the coordinated entry access site found here.
House Wake! Phase II Announcement
In Phase I, the County successfully selected partners to implement programs focused on addressing the various needs of households who are homeless, cannot access financial resources, and face a high risk of contracting COVID with negative outcomes.
Phase II of House Wake! focuses on helping to reduce evictions in Wake County, by providing resources for tenants and landlords.
The House Wake! Phase II three-step intervention process consists of:
- Eviction Prevention through a partnership with Telamon Corporation, which aims to provide financial assistance to tenants and landlords to cover rent shortfalls resulting from a loss of income;
- Legal services, provided pro bono, for tenants who need legal counsel to negotiate filed evictions with landlords; and
- Homelessness Prevention and Relocation Assistance, which will assist with relocating residents whose housing could not be stabilized through Interventions #1 or 2.
Partners for this next phase include:
- Telamon Corporation (Intervention #1): Telamon Corporation will be providing rental assistance through the House Wake! Eviction Prevention Program. This program targets Wake County residents who do not exceed 80% of the area median income and provides financial assistance to tenants and landlords in Wake County to cover rent shortfalls resulting from a loss of income. The program will pay for a share of rent in exchange for landlords not pursuing eviction and forgiving a portion of rent, for a period of up to three months. Applications will be available after the program launches in late September.
- Legal Aid of North Carolina (Intervention #2): This service is designed to help landlords and tenants avoid legal protracted litigation. A combination of straightforward assistance payments in conjunction with mediated and negotiated settlements will help Wake County avoid massive dislocation, facilitate long term housing stability, particularly important for children, and avoid protracted litigation. Applicants who meet criteria will be referred to Legal Aid.
- Wake Prevent! (Intervention #3): Wake Prevent! Is a homeless prevention program aimed at providing time-sensitive, short-term financial assistance to at-risk households before families become literally homeless. Prevention can involve landlord/household mediation, short-term financial assistance and case management to ensure housing stability for individuals who qualify for the program. This program targets Wake County residents who are between 30-50% area median. Wake Prevent! Will aid Wake County residents who are in a housing crisis that qualify for the program. Applicants who meet criteria will be referred to Wake Prevent!
*If you are facing an eviction not due to COVID-19, services can be accessed through the House Wake! Access Hub.
Find Housing and Other Services
Affordable Rental Housing
Resources for finding and helping pay for affordable rental units in Wake County:
- Raleigh Housing Authority: The Raleigh Housing Authority owns and manages over 1,400 public housing units and administers over 3,915 Section 8 vouchers. There is generally a waiting list for these programs.
- Housing Authority of the County of Wake: The Housing Authority of the County of Wake has 343 public housing units and provides Section 8 vouchers to over 400 participants. The HACW also manages six rental houses for its affiliate, the Wake County Housing Finance Corporation (WCHFC).
- SocialServe Website: SocialServe is a website with affordable housing listings for rent and for sale.
- Wake Network of Care Housing Search Resources: Wake Network of Care is an online information portal that features links to a number of resources to help in the search for affordable rental housing.
Permanent Supportive Housing
Supportive housing combines affordable housing with tenancy support services to help those who face the complex challenges to live with stability, autonomy and dignity. It allows people to live independently who otherwise might not be able to do so. The core services in supportive housing are:
- Pre-tenancy services
- Outreach and engagement
- Housing search
- Application assistance
- Move-in assistance
- Tenancy-sustaining services
- Landlord relationship management
- Tenant stabilization services
- Tenancy rights and responsibilities education
- Eviction prevention
- Crisis intervention
- Program participation
In addition, supportive housing service providers link tenants to an array of primary and behavioral health care, education, employment and community services.
Access to permanent supportive housing is received through the Coordinated Entry process.
Programs to combat homelessness and support individuals and families experiencing homelessness:
- South Wilmington Street Center: For men experiencing homelessness, Wake County operates the South Wilmington Street Center. It is the largest of the county’s eight homeless shelters.
- Centralized Housing Intake for Single Women, Families and Youth: For women, families and youth, several nonprofits offer homeless shelters and rapid rehousing services. Placement into these programs is handled through a coordinated entry process led by the Raleigh/Wake Partnership to End and Prevent Homelessness. Information about the process and how to begin can be found here.
- Cornerstone Day Services: Wake County operates Cornerstone, a day center that provides services to persons experiencing homelessness.
- Services include:
- Personal care items
- Local phone access
- Cellphone charging station
- WiFi access
- Message line and board
- Mental health services information
- Travelers Aid (when available)
- Transportation support for initial medical appointment
- Mail services
- Cornerstone also offers a Community Outreach Team, which provides intensive, community-based services to individuals living with severe mental illness and experiencing homelessness. Eligible participants can receive mental health treatment and housing support.
- Please call 919-508-0777 for information on services provided through Cornerstone.
- Services include:
- McKinney Team: The Wake County McKinney Team offers behavioral health support to persons who are mentally ill and homeless. Through a HUD grant, the team provides outreach, assessment, assistance with housing access and on‐going support to maintain housing through medication management, therapy and case management.
- Wake Network of Care: The Wake Network of Care is a one-stop resource directory to help locate needed services and support throughout the Wake community. The Wake Network of Care provides comprehensive information on local services and organizations and a learning center dedicated to topics related to health and well-being.
The Homelessness Prevention Program serves as an emergency resource for Wake County residents who are in a housing crisis and are at risk of experiencing literal homelessness. This program provides a full array of housing support services to ensure that fewer citizens become homeless and that those who need affordable housing are matched to the affordable units in Wake County. Services are designed to help you remain in current permanent housing or safely identify alternative permanent housing without entering the homeless system. The Wake County’s Homelessness Prevention Program receives all referrals through the Wake County Coordinated Entry System, which can be accessed here.
Rehabilitation Programs: The Wake County Housing and Community Revitalization Division offers two types of rehabilitation programs in order to meet the needs of citizens:
- Elderly and Disabled Homeowner Grants: If you are elderly or disabled and need modest repairs to your home to assist with mobility or retrofits needed after hospital stays, this grant program may be able to help. The program serves homeowners earning at or below 50% area median income (AMI). The current AMI can be found here.
- Emergency Grant Program: If you are a homeowner earning at or below 40% area median income , and you are in danger because of a problem with your home that needs to be fixed immediately, an emergency grant may be able to assist you. Eligible repairs include: heating, well/septic, roof and electrical hazards. For information and eligibility requirements on these programs, please contact Arlene Vinson or 919-856-5906.
Potential Homeowners: Wake County and DHIC, Inc., offer the Affordable Homeownership Program. This program provides forgivable, no-monthly-payment loans up to $20,000 to low- and moderate-income households serving all Wake County municipalities outside of Raleigh and Cary. Loans can be used for home purchase assistance and foreclosure prevention.
For more information visit the program webpage.
If you are interested in buying a home, there are opportunities for first-time homebuyers to learn about the process and take low-cost housing counseling lessons.
Some of the area’s HUD certified housing counseling agencies include:
- DHIC, 919-832-1170;
- Triangle Family Services, 919-821-1170; and
- Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America, 919-855-8484.
Learn more about the process of buying a home here.
Converting your home to affordable housing: Would you like to become a landlord and rent your home? If you can keep the rent affordable (below 80% Area Median Income – amount varies depending on family size) and can maintain in good landlord/tenant relationships, please contact David Harris.
If you are currently experiencing a housing crisis, start with Coordinated Entry. Find assistance here.
Our programs and services are based in a variety of service center and office locations across the county:
- Cornerstone Center: Cornerstone is a multiservice center for homeless individuals.
- Location: 220 Snow Ave., Raleigh, NC 27603
- Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 8:30 a.m.–noon and 1–5 p.m. Wednesday: 1–5 p.m.
- Information and Referrals: We provide information and/or referral to homeless individuals about resources within the community. These resources include:
- Crisis intervention
- Mental health
- Substance abuse treatment
- Employment Counseling
- Financial Assistance
- Disability services
- Veterans’ resources
- Legal services
- Additional services offered (Please call for qualifications, times and availability): Laundry, showers, substance abuse services, local telephone, temporary mailing address, traveler’s aid and identification cards.
- Mental Health Services: We provide outreach, engagement, crisis intervention, clinical assessment and treatment, and case management services to homeless individuals who are dealing with mental health issues. Specific criteria must be met to receive these services.
- HOPWA Program: The Housing Opportunities for Persons With AIDS (HOPWA) program is the only federal program dedicated to addressing the housing needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS and their families. It is designed to help low-income clients living with HIV/AIDS to have access to affordable housing.
- Through the HOPWA program at Cornerstone, clients can also be assisted with starting/reestablishing HIV services with the Human Services’ Clinic B and/or Under One Roof.
- Bus tickets or transportation can be offered for an HIV service with an appointment card. Case manager will assist client in finding suitable and affordable housing thru the Rental Assistance Housing Program (RAPH) of Wake County. A case manager will also provide monthly home visits once client is housed for housing support.
- South Wilmington Street Center
- 1420 S. Wilmington St., Raleigh, 27603
- The South Wilmington Street Center is an emergency and transitional shelter for homeless men. It opened in 2001 as a newly renovated facility and changed the way we offer services to the homeless population. The center provides a variety of services both on-site and off-site that are designed to lead men to self-sufficiency.
- The shelter provides two types of dorms: short-term emergency dorms with overnight shelter only, and longer-term dorms for men who engage in services. Those services include case management, budgeting and credit counseling, mental health/substance abuse treatment, and referrals to other programs. The goal is to provide safe shelter while the men develop realistic plans for moving out of the shelter, and into employment and housing of their own.
- For more information, call South Wilmington Street Center at 919-857-9428.
- Wake County Office Building
- 337 S. Salisbury St. Raleigh, NC 27601
- Housing and Community Revitalization Administrative offices are located at the Waverly F. Akins Building (Wake County Office Building) in downtown Raleigh between Salisbury and Fayetteville streets at the corner of Davie Street. Visitors can enter from Salisbury or Fayetteville streets. Please be prepared to show picture identification.
- Visitor Parking: The Wake County Parking Deck is located on the corner of Davie, McDowell & Cabarrus streets. The nine-level deck has two entrances and three exits. Vehicle entrances are located on Cabarrus and Davie streets.
- Swinburne Building
External Resources and Websites
Find Affordable Rental Housing
- NCHousingSearch.org: A free housing locator service available to consumers looking for affordable rental housing.
- SocialServe.com: A website that allows you to search for listings of apartments, mobile homes, duplexes and single-family units. This includes Section 8 properties and assisted living facilities, as well as market-rate housing.
- GoSection8.com: If you have a Section 8 voucher and are having a difficult time locating housing, check out GoSection8.com, which provides of list of properties that will accept Section 8.
- Town of Cary Affordable Housing: Provides a list of tax credit, subsidized and senior properties available in the Town of Cary.
- City of Raleigh Rental Housing: If you live in Wake County and make less than 50% of the area median income, you may qualify for housing with the City of Raleigh. They offer a variety of houses and apartments at affordable rental rates.
- HUD Subsidized Housing List: HUD provides a list of apartments based on 30% of income for families and individuals with very limited income.
Homeownership and Finding a Home
- Habitat for Humanity in Wake County: Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit housing organization. Habitat serves low-income citizens of Wake County who are in substandard or overcrowded housing or are trying to escape violent neighborhoods.
- DHIC.org: Established in 1974, DHIC, Inc. is a private nonprofit housing development company that builds high-quality affordable housing in the Research Triangle Region of North Carolina. DHIC's homeownership center assists clients in credit, budgets and homeownership.
- Self-Help Credit Union: Self-Help is a community development lender that has provided more than $3.5 billion in financing to 40,000 homebuyers, small businesses and nonprofits. Self-Help reaches people who are underserved by conventional lenders – particularly minorities, women, rural residents, and low-wealth families – through the support of socially-responsible citizens and institutions across the U.S..
- City of Raleigh Homeownership Program: The City of Raleigh offers education, repair, and down payment support. You may qualify for up to $30,000 in down-payment assistance.
- Fannie Mae: Fannie Mae is a private, shareholder-owned company that works to make sure mortgage money is available for people in communities all across America. They do not lend money directly to homebuyers. Instead, they work with lenders to make sure they don't run out of mortgage funds, so more people can achieve the dream of homeownership.
- HUD and Other Homes for Sale: Several federal agencies have properties to sell. In fact, HUD sells both single-family homes and multifamily properties. Check them out – one might be just what you're looking for!
Credit and Finance
- Triangle Family Services: As a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, Consumer Credit Counseling Services (CCCS) at Triangle Family Services has nationally certified credit counselors for daytime, evening and telephone appointments. Contact the Consumer Credit Counseling Coordinator at 919-821-0790 ext. 122.
- North Carolina Consumer Protection Section: Learn more about predatory mortgage lending.
- Ficoscore.com: Learn how credit scores work.
- annualcreditreport.com: By law, you may obtain a free copy of your credit report once every 12 months from each of the nationwide consumer credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Visit the page above to learn how to access this information by email, telephone or regular mail, or visit the reporting companies at: Equifax, Experian, and/or Transunion.
- Privatemi.com: Get information on private mortgage information.
- Veterans Affairs Home Loans: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has information on VA loans, certificates of eligibility, VA-acquired properties and application forms.
- Consumer Education Services, INC. (CESI): Consumer Education Services, Inc. is a nonprofit organization committed to empowering and inspiring consumers nationwide to become debt free. They offer services such as credit counseling, foreclosure prevention, bankruptcy counseling, reverse mortgage counseling, homebuyer classes, and down payment assistance.
- USDA Rural Housing Guaranteed Loans & Direct Loans: Learn about the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Housing Guaranteed Loans and Direct Loans.
General Housing Information
- N.C. Housing Finance Agency (NCHFA): The North Carolina Housing Finance Agency website offers information about housing, renters' rights and responsibilities, fair housing laws and housing search options.
- CASA: CASA offers housing to meet the needs of persons with disabilities or who may be facing homelessness. CASA programs are designed to help these individuals overcome the challenges they face.
- Resources for Seniors: Resources for Seniors offers information about senior housing, retirement communities, assisted living, nursing homes and much more.
- North Carolina Housing Coalition
- Hud.gov: The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's website offers sections on homeownership, HUD homes, fair housing, homeless, consumer information and much more!
FY 2021 Income Limits
All affordable housing programs qualify recipients based on their income. Since different parts of the country have varying living costs and income levels, the U.S. department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) determines an Area Median Income (AMI) for each housing market throughout the country. Family size is taken into account because of higher costs of providing for a larger family. For this years income limits, see below.