UPDATED - Rent Reductions for Residents Who've Lost Income!
**** Updated News Release ****
Columbia Housing Waives Policy to Expedite Rent Reductions
for Residents Who've Lost Income!
Columbia, SC.... Columbia Housing is hearing from many of its residents who, like many others, are losing their jobs or are experiencing a reduction in household income because of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus pandemic. The agency wants to work with those residents who've lost income and are now finding it hard to pay rent.
"The portion of the rent that our families pay is based on 30% of their income. Many of our families are experiencing a reduction of income or loss of employment as a result of COVID-19 layoffs and temporary closures. The reduction of household income has resulted in an increased rent burden for our families, well beyond 30% of their income. This makes it extremely difficult to make ends meet," says Interim Executive Director Ivory Mathews. "In our current policies, when a family has a decrease in income it can take up to two months before the new rent amount becomes effective. For example, if a family has a loss of household income on March 25, 2020, the rent would be made effective May 1, 2020. The waiver of our current policy will make it so that when a family has a reduction in household income on March 25, 2020, the new rent would be made effective March April 1, 2020. retroactive to the 1st day of the month the reduction occurred."
Columbia Housing is now waiving its operational policies regarding rent reductions for families that have lost of income related to the COVID-19. The pictograph of the new policy waiver is shown below:
During the COVID-19 crisis, we are allowing residents to self-certify and waiving the verification requirement. Public Housing residents and Housing Choice Voucher participants may now more easily report loss of income through one of the following methods:
1. Complete a fillable form.
2. Send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
3. Call 803-251-2747 and verbally report the loss of income.
"Columbia Housing recognizes the increased challenges facing the families we serve and want to reassure the community that we are implementing every option available within the HUD regulatory confines to ease the burden on our families," says Mathews.
Columbia Housing currently provides affordable housing to 1,600+ families in its Public Housing Program and 4,000+ families in its Housing Choice Voucher Program.
*Updated March 26, 2020
For more information on Columbia Housing's COVID-19 Response please visit our COVID-19 Response web page.
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