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Hundreds of millions of dollars available to help Washington renters behind on payments

Byrd Barr Place can cover up to 15 months of rent for Seattle residents who have gotten behind on payments.

SEATTLE — Hundreds of millions of dollars are available in Washington to help people catch up on rent payments they missed during the pandemic.

Community nonprofits in each county are helping distribute it and are now looking for renters who could use some help.

“This is an extremely unique opportunity with very few strings attached or very few hoops to jump through that can really help people out a lot,” said Jacob Roney, technology coordinator with Byrd Barr Place, which has a million dollars to hand out.

Byrd Barr Place is covering up to 15 months of rent for people living in Seattle who have not been able to pay due to unemployment, a reduction in income, illness, or other financial hardships linked to COVID-19.

“This is not a loan, this is a grant,” Roney said.

The assistance covers a wide range of renters. In Seattle, a single-person household with an income of up to $64,790 is eligible for the money. In Tacoma, that income limit is $50,900.

It's important that renters apply for the money with the designated service provider in their county.

See the list of providers here.

Byrd Barr Place says it's eager to get those dollars out the door, and if they run out, they say they can ask for more.

“We really are feeling pressure to try and get this money into the hands of people who need it by the end of September to avoid any sort of mass eviction crisis,” Roney said.