Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Detail

Question:

Does a lease have to be in place in order to pay rental assistance? Is an oral lease acceptable? (REVISED 8/18/11)

Answer:

Each program participant receiving rental assistance must have a written lease for the rental unit, unless the assistance is solely for rental arrears. The program participant must be on the lease. The document must identify the payee (i.e., the individual and/or entity collecting rent), the HPRP program participant as the tenant, and the terms of the agreement (dates of tenancy, monthly amount due, etc.). The agreement must be current, signed by both parties and dated. A verbal/oral agreement is not sufficient for providing ongoing financial assistance. Note, however, that once a written lease/agreement is established, eligible program participants may receive assistance with future payments.

Where the assistance is solely for rental arrears, an oral agreement may be accepted in place of a written lease, if the agreement gives the program participant an enforceable leasehold interest under state law and the agreement and rent owed are sufficiently documented by the owner’s financial records, rent ledgers or canceled checks.

Grantees/subgrantees are encouraged to work with the landlord and program participant to resolve arrears that cannot be documented, using other resources including negotiating a payment plan if possible.

For information about providing legal assistance without a written lease, view the related FAQ.

FAQ ID
433
Keyword(s)
None
Program
Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HPRP)
E-System
None
Resource Topic(s)
None
FAQ Topic(s)
Lease and Rent Requirements
Eligible Activities/Costs - Financial Assistance
Date Created
08/18/2011