Rent, Utility, and Mortgage Assistance Program

Financial Pathways of the Piedmont is providing mortgage assistance under the RUMA program through the Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus fund (CDBG-CV) from the US Department of Housing (HUD). These funds are to be used to help Winston-Salem residents affected by the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic to assist with past due rent, utility, and mortgage payments on behalf of eligible clients.

We are here to help you understand and navigate the RUMA process

These funds are to be used to help Winston-Salem residents affected by the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic to assist with past due rent, utility, and mortgage payments on behalf of eligible clients.  Applicant must be at least ONE MONTH PAST DUE on rent, utilities, or mortgage payment.

Eligibility criteria below:

  1. Must be a resident within the Winston-Salem city limits and have occupied the property in Winston-Salem as their primary residence for the last three months from the date of application.
  2. Someone in the household has been affected by the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Those impacts include:
  • Reduction in household income due to job loss, furlough, or reduction of hours worked
  • An increase in expenses because of COVID-19
  • Household income that is at or below 80% of area median income
  • Have a mortgage, utility, or rental account in their name and are at least one month delinquent on such account at the time of application (must provide documentation)
  1. The household has not already received Federal COVID-19 assistance for rent, utility, or mortgage.

4. If you are currently in an active bankruptcy and your mortgage is included, you are not eligible to receive this assistance.

If you were recently dismissed or discharged from a bankruptcy, your mortgage company will have to verify your status before we can consider approval for mortgage assistance.

Financial Pathways of the Piedmont is currently processing mortgage and utility delinquency applications ONLY. If this should change we will update our website and information at that time.

RUMA applications are processed on a first come first served basis until all funds are exhausted. The decision process can take 1-2 weeks. Your counselor will contact you with the decision and/or any additional information required.  Financial Pathways will distribute RUMA payments directly to service providers each week on Tuesdays and Wednesdays only.

If you have internet access and the ability to upload required documents, you can apply online at https://portal.neighborlysoftware.com/winston-salem/Participant.  Once you have submitted your application your case will be assigned to a counselor at the appropriate agency. If you are not able to submit electronically, you can download a printable application HERE, you can email help@financialpaths.org to have an application sent to you, or you can call 336.896.1191 to have an application mailed to you. Hard copy applications will have to be returned to the agency with all supporting documentation in order to be processed. You will be contacted for an appointment or to discuss any missing information for your application.

Due to the pandemic, all appointments are being conducted virtually or by phone. You can mail, email, fax, or drop off completed paper applications. Applications cannot be processed without all the required documentation or information.

*RUMA (rent, utility and mortgage assistance) being facilitated by three separate agencies; FPP, Sunnyside Ministries, and H.A.R.R.Y. Veterans.

Need help now? Get in touch.

(336) 896-1191 (local)

1-888-474-8015 (toll free)

help@financialpaths.org

MORTGAGE ASSISTANCE ONLY- under the RUMA program through the City of WS

Must meet eligibility requirements: COVID-related hardship, at or under 80% median income, the mortgage is in applicant’s name, past due at least 30 days at the time of application, all members of household required on the application whether related or not.

WAYS TO APPLY BELOW

ONLINE PORTAL THROUGH CITY OF WS

Apply today online- https://portal.neighborlysoftware.com/winston-salem/Participant

Paper or emailed application

You can download a paper application here 

You can request an emailed application at help@financialpaths.org

RUMA FAQ's

How do I know if I am eligible?

Eligibility will be determined by Financial Pathways of the Piedmont based on federal guidelines from CDBG-CV funds issued to the City of WS.

You will be required to confirm that:

·         You are a Winston-Salem city resident and resided at the application address for at least the last 3 months from the date of application?

·         Your hardship is COVID-19 related?

·         Your gross household income is at or below 80% AMI?

·         Resident requesting assistance must be named on the rent, utility, or mortgage statements?

·         Resident is at least one month past due on the rent, utility, or mortgage at the time of application?

 

How much emergency assistance does the program provide?

The amount is specific to the financial need of the household. The program can provide up to 6 months of arrears for rent, utilities, and mortgage assistance.

 

How much can I receive?

The program is designed to make up the difference between what you can afford to pay and what you have to pay for rent, mortgage, or utilities. The agency taking your application will work with you; the amount of assistance will vary from household to household based on its circumstances.

How do I prove that my household has experienced economic hardship due to COVID-19?

You must provide documents that show one or more individuals within the household: 

  • Has qualified for unemployment benefits; or
  • Has experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced other financial hardship due, directly, or indirectly, to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Is at risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability, which may include:
  • A past due utility or rent notice or eviction notice.

 

I have a mortgage, but I also need assistance with utilities. Can I apply for both at Financial Pathways of the Piedmont? (if this changes we will update our website and FAQ’s)

Unfortunately, no. Financial Pathways is only set up to administer mortgage assistance. You will have to make a separate application for utility assistance at either Sunnyside Ministry or HARRY Veteran Community Outreach Service.

 

Does the assistance I receive have to be repaid?

No, the assistance does not have to be repaid; unless it is determined you have received duplicate funding specifically from this federal CARES/CDBG-CV program.

 

Is assistance available for past due utilities and other housing expenses?

Yes, utility assistance is available for past due utilities including gas, electricity, and water.

 

Do I have to report this assistance on my 2020 taxes?

No, the assistance is paid directly to the landlord, utility provider, or mortgage servicer on your behalf.

 

What documents do I need?

Documents are needed to verify identity, income, residence, back due rent, utilities, and/or mortgage. Additionally, households may have to provide additional documentation based on their individual circumstance, (i.e., unemployment benefits, other assistance/income, or hardship).

 

Is a social security number required as part of the application?

Yes

 

How is household income calculated?

Household income is the combined total income of all workers in the household, including children aged 18 and older.

I was able to pay my rent up until now, but do not think I will be able to pay next month, can I get help?

Unfortunately, this program is only available to households behind on their rent, utilities, and mortgage. If you find yourself in that position, please apply for assistance if that occurs. We also recommend a follow-up counseling session to navigate through your personal situation and where other options may be available.

 

I received emergency assistance from another Federal program, am I still eligible for this program?

If you received emergency rent, utility, or mortgage assistance from another Federal program due to Covid-19 then you are not eligible for this program.

 

I have received assistance from this program. Am I eligible to reapply for additional assistance? How long can I receive assistance?

The RUMA program provides assistance for up to six months, provided that funds are still available, and the recipient continues to meet the eligibility requirements.

I have a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher or live in a public housing unit; can this program pay the tenant portion of past due rent?

Yes, if you meet the eligibility requirements. Eligibility for assistance will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and additional documentation may be required for approval.

 

How is the RUMA program different from ERAP?

RUMA is available to low-income homeowners who are behind on their mortgage as well as to renters. ERAP (Emergency Rental Assistance Program) is available only to renters. Also, ERAP includes internet service as a utility that is eligible for payment assistance. RUMA does not.

Is HARRY Veteran Community Outreach Service only accepting applications from veterans?

No. HARRY will process all applications, including those of non-veterans.

This is a city program. Why do I apply at these social agencies?

The city does not have any existing programs that deliver monthly assistance to residents, nor does it have any experience administering such programs. Because of the extremely short time that was available between when the city learned it would receive the money, and when the federal government wanted funds to start being disbursed, the city chose to partner with these social service agencies to administer the program.

How do I apply for the program?

Interested applicants can start the application process with the Neighborly Portal through the City of WS at: https://portal.neighborlysoftware.com/winston-salem/Participant.

You can also visit our website at www.financialpath.org, email us at help@financialpaths.org or call 336.896.1191. Counseling sessions are still being conducted virtually or by phone.