Eviction Prevention and Utility Arrears
Metro Housing|Boston Administers RAFT (Residential Assistance for Families in Transition). It is funded by public contracts and private grants and donations, and helps low-income renters to achieve housing stability and better lives.
For households applying to RAFT for assistance with rent arrears, a notice to quit or eviction notice/court summons is now required. The RAFT program helps keep households in stable housing situations when facing eviction, loss of utilities, and other housing emergencies. RAFT provides qualifying households with maximum benefit limit of $10,000 per household in a 12-month period. RAFT can cover utilities, moving costs, and overdue rent. Renters or landlords can apply by submitting an online application.
To learn more about the RAFT program, visit: Residential Assistance for Families in Transition (RAFT) program | Mass.gov
Click below for a step-by-step guide on how to apply for the RAFT program:
Landlords are required to send a Notice to Quit to a tenant prior to filing for an eviction. A Notice to Quit is NOT an eviction. You do not need to immediately leave your apartment. You are entitled to a legal proceeding in which you can defend against an eviction. ONLY a court order can force you to leave your apartment.
FACING EVICTION? CLICK HERE FOR RESOURCES.
FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE APPLICATION
Click HERE to learn more about submitting a complete application, eligibility and required documents.
PLEASE NOTE: You will have to submit the following documentation. Your application will be processed faster if you include all of these documents.
Due to the overwhelming demand for assistance, it is now taking four weeks for completed applications to be processed. Please be sure your application and all documentation are complete to allow for us to process the application as quickly as possible.
We appreciate your patience. Our staff will review submitted applications that are complete before those that are incomplete. Please be sure to include all necessary documents when submitting application.
The RAFT application system requires both a tenant application and a landlord application for tenants who are requesting rental assistance. Landlords and property owners can (a) begin the RAFT application process for their tenants who may need to request financial assistance for overdue rent OR (b) complete the application once the tenant has submitted their application.
To begin the landlord/property owner application process, you must first register an account as a new user if you have not already done so here: User Registration (mass.gov)
***Your account must have info entered for the Payee, Properties, and Payment Methods sections on your profile before you can apply.
Once a landlord/property owner has an account, you can apply here: MA Emergency Housing Payment Assistance Portal (mass.gov) If your tenant has already completed their application at the time you are submitting the landlord application, be sure to include the Tenant Application Code that you received in your email. Note that the Tenant Application Code is different from their Case ID.
For more guidance on how to apply and create a landlord profile, please utilize this reference guide: Housing Assistance Application Reference Guide (mass.gov)
For a list of landlords’/property owners’ Frequently Asked Questions, visit: Landlord FAQs download (mass.gov)
For other resources, including recordings of webinars about Landlord/Property Owner RAFT Application Portal, visit: RAFT Public Resource and Training Portal | Mass.gov
DISCRIMINATION AGAINST TENANTS RECEIVING SUBSIDIES BY A LANDLORD IS PROHIBITED
Tenants and Landlords should be aware that Chapter 151B of the Massachusetts General Laws prohibits discrimination by a landlord against any tenant receiving federal, state, or local housing subsidies, including rental assistance or rental supplements, because the individual is such a recipient. A landlord’s refusal to accept emergency rental assistance, that covers the entire amount owed to the landlord, may, in some circumstances, constitute a violation of Chapter 151B. Landlords should consult their own legal counsel for advice before declining rental assistance that covers all outstanding rent arrears.
Landlords can begin the application process for their tenants who may need to request financial assistance for overdue rent.
At this time, the MA Emergency Housing payment Assistance Application is not accepting applications from homeowners. Homeowners in need of mortgage assistance or other housing assistance may apply for the new Homeowner Assistance Fund (MA HAF) Program. Please visit this link to learn more about HAF and to see if you may be eligible. To apply to Mass HAF, visit www.massmortgagehelp.org.
Who qualifies for RAFT?
What can RAFT funds be used for?
Program funds can be used for housing-related expenses only. Appropriate uses of funds include, but are not limited to:
Wednesday 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM
The Housing Consumer Education Center
1411 Tremont Street, Boston, 02120
Additional Assistance Programs
The City of Boston has set up their own program to cover Boston residents. If you live in Boston, you may wish to apply to their program by visiting this website.
Metro Housing|Boston in Your Community
Colocations are part of Metro Housing|Boston’s ongoing efforts to be more visible in the communities we serve and to be more responsive to our clients and their housing needs. Partnering with local agencies and using their expertise in the community increases our ability to effectively serve those in need of housing assistance.
These partnerships help the residents of that area participate in our programs without the added hassle of securing transportation and spending time traveling far from home.
Questions about which communities Metro Housing is in? Please contact Gregg Cothias, Colocation Program Manager at Gregg.Cothias@MetroHousingBoston.org for more information about our Colocation sites and services.
Can’t make it to our office? Contact the Housing Hub at ResourceLine@MetroHousingBoston.org for locations and schedules.