There are times in our lives when paying bills becomes a hardship as a single mother. Unforeseen circumstances can arise without notice putting us behind. In some cases, trouble with paying rent becomes an issue. There are rental assistance programs for single mothers available in every state to help with paying rent or mortgages. The program availability and eligibility requirements will vary state by state.
In some states, programs through the local welfare office are available in the form of a one time grant. This grant can help to pay rent from between one and three months depending on the need of the family and program details. If you are already receiving assistance in the form of food stamps, Medicaid or cash assistance, ask your caseworker about financial assistance availability for rent. Most of the time an eviction notice is required to receive assistance to remain in your current home. Income requirements must be satisfied along with other program requirements being met. Simply misspending your funds will not qualify you for these programs. They are intended to help in an emergency situation when funds received from employment are not sufficient.
Other assistance programs in local communities also exist. Your local Salvation Army does have a rental assistance program. There are not always funds available for this type of assistance. The Salvation Army is funded by grants and donations. If grant funds and donations do not come in, they are unable to help. They will have other resources within your local community to provide to you if they are unable to help. The Salvation Army will help once per year with eviction prevention if you qualify for their services.
Many churches within a community often offer eviction prevention rental assistance as well. These are usually larger church organizations that provide other community services. A list of churches that help with rent are available at your local community services office such as the welfare office or through Salvation Army. Churches may not require an eviction notice; they may just require your proof of income and the proof of your necessary household bills. Some churches have programs specifically for rental assistance for single mothers.
If your local area has a community action agency or community services agency other than the welfare department, inquire with them regarding rental assistance for single mothers. Some communities have programs specifically for single mothers. If you receive WIC, ask them for resources. They may have information that other agencies don’t as they work more with single mothers than some other agencies.
Rental assistance for single mothers to obtain shelter is often another available program in many states. There are times when a severe circumstance forces a mother to move out of her current living situation and find shelter for her and her children. The funds aren’t always available in emergent situations. Some agencies will help with security deposits and first month’s rent. Services like this are often available through community programs and not the welfare office.
Obtaining proper shelter is important. As a single mother it is hard enough to pay the bills that you currently have without having to come up with extra to obtain reasonable housing for your children. Some states do have a grant program for rental assistance for single mothers that never has to be paid back. This can be used to put a down a down payment on a home purchase or to pay a security deposit, first month’s rent and moving expenses. A caseworker or social worker would need to help you apply for one of these grant programs.
Other Housing Assistance Programs
Section 8 and HUD provide low-cost shelter to families in need. The rental agreement amount will be based upon your income. This amount can be from a few dollars a month to a few hundred a month. These programs are for extremely low-income and under employed families to provide adequate shelter for their children. Program requirements for these services are very strict. You may not have unapproved people living with you, it may also be a stipulation that no one with any criminal history be permitted to live in the home with you and your children. If your income changes, you are required to report it immediately. Government subsidized housing provides enough space with the basic amenities required for a family to live safely together and be able to provide food and shelter with a little less trouble.
It is very common to be put on a waiting list for Section 8 or HUD housing. Sometimes the waiting lists are years long. Emergent cases are pushed up closer to the front of the list, but the wait can still be more than 30 days. If this is the case, seek out a state grant for housing assistance or visit another program in the area to inquire about their funding availability. If there no funds available with any programs and the waiting list is too long for HUD or Section 8, seek the help of a shelter. There are shelters specifically for women and children. These are safe facilities that will allow you to stay with them until you can move into a new home. Meals are often provided along with basic bathroom amenities such as showers and laundry. In many of these facilities, it is required that you help with cleaning and/or cooking to help the facility run more smooth.
Always ask for program availability and additional avenues for receiving the help that you do need for your family. There may be programs available that you are not aware of. That is often the case. Many women struggle financially and think that no one can help them, the fact of the matter is, there are more assistance programs available for single mothers than one may realize. You just have to reach out and find the help. The ideas given above all point you in the right direction to start searching for the help that you need.