Rent Assistance Program

Through a contractual partnership agreement with the City of Orlando, Heart of Florida United Way (HFUW) will manage the CARES rent assistance program to include screening applicants to verify Orlando city limit residency, collecting the full application and required documents, and issuing rent assistance payments directly to landlords/property managers.

The City of Orlando is funding this program with $1,532,608 in Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) and anticipates being able to assist an estimated 300 households with the available funding.

The City of Orlando CARES Rent Assistance Program is limited to residents in Orlando city limits who have lost employment due to COVID-19/Coronavirus. Under this partnership, HFUW will provide case management that will allow eligible households to receive up to $10,000 in rent assistance per household.


Eligibility Criteria

In order to qualify for assistance, applicants must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • Applicants must be a City of Orlando resident.
  • Applicants must be at least one month past due on rent payments between March 1, 2020, to October 31, 2020.
  • Applicants must have made their February 2020 rent payment.
  • Applicants must have proof of financial hardship due to COVID-19. 
  • Applicants’ current household income cannot exceed 120% of Orange County’s Average Median Income:
    • $61,080 for a family of 1
    • $69,840 for a family of 2
    • $78,600 for a family of 3
    • $87,240 for a family of 4
    • $94,320 for a family of 5
    • $101,280 for a family of 6
  • If your household passes the screening, you must complete an online application, submit proof of residency, submit proof that your household lost hours and/or wages as a result of COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic, and submit other required documentation as identified by the City of Orlando.
  • Pre-screened residents will receive the application on Wednesday, September 23 and can submit the completed applications that same day.
  • Limited funds are available and completed applications will be processed in the order received beginning Wednesday, September 23, 2020.

Program Process

Step One: Online Screening Form (https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/orlandocares)

  • The first step to request assistance is to complete the online screening form.
  • On this form, you will provide us with your name, the address of your residence, your email address, and your cell phone number.
  • Once we have verified that you live in Orlando city limits, you will be contacted by email and/or text with the application and next steps.

You can check to see if your address is in Orlando city limits by using the City of Orlando’s website at https://gis.orlando.gov/OrlandoInformationLocator/. You must have an active email address in order to receive the application and next steps if your household is eligible to apply for rent assistance. Only fully completed screening forms will be assessed for eligibility.

Step Two: Online Application

If we verify your address is in Orlando city limits, you will be emailed the online application. Applications will not be provided until Wednesday, September 23, 2020. With the online application, you must provide:

  • Your legal name, current address, and contact information for the head of household (including cell phone and email);
  • A list of the people residing in the household including name, age, relationship to head of household;
  • Provide a copy of a valid photo I.D. for all members of the household (e.g., U.S. Government-issued driver’s license, passport, etc.);
  • Social Security Card for the applicant/head of household (or a document from a government entity or verifiable institution that includes full social security number);
  • Current Lease;
  • Self-Certification of Income and COVID Hardship Form (a form must be submitted for each adult member of the household); and,
  • Duplication of Benefits Disaster Assistance Agreement.

In addition, your landlord/property manager must provide the following documents:

  • Landlord/Property Manager Verification Form; and,
  • W-9 Form.

Only complete applications that include all of the required attachments and documents will be processed. Fully completed applications will be processed on a first reply, first served basis.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I know if I live in Orlando City limits? You can check your home address on the City of Orlando’s website at https://gis.orlando.gov/OrlandoInformationLocator/. Enter your address in the Find Address/Intersection search box. You will be redirected to a new screen which shows your address on a map, followed by several boxes with additional information. The Jurisdiction (City/County) box will let you know if your address is within city limits or county limits.

I need mortgage assistance. How do I get help? Please visit our website at https://www.hfuw.org/housingresources/ to learn more about other resources that are available for those impacted by COVID-19 in Central Florida.

I need utility assistance. How do I get help? If you are a customer of Duke Energy or the Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC), please visit our website at https://www.hfuw.org/utilities/ to request assistance for your utility bill. For all other utility providers, please contact 2-1-1 to learn about other resources in the community.

I completed the online screening form. What happens next? Pre-screened residents will receive the application on Wednesday, September 23 and can submit the completed applications that same day. Limited funds are available and completed applications will be processed in the order received beginning Wednesday, September 23, 2020.


Questions or Concerns

If you have any questions about the City of Orlando CARES Rent Assistance Program, please email replycorona@hfuw.org.  

If you need any other assistance, you can contact 2-1-1 by phone, email, chat or text (just text your zip code to 898-211). Reaching out will get you connected to a multilingual 2-1-1 specialist in your area who can put you in touch with local organizations providing critical services to improve and save lives. For more information, please visit https://www.hfuw.org/gethelp/.

Contact Us
407-835-0900407-835-0900 | hfuwcontact@hfuw.org |

Heart of Florida United Way, 1940 Cannery Way, Orlando, FL 32804

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