If you're having a hard time making rent this summer, the B.C. government has got your back. On Friday, June 19, BC housing announced that it will extend its rent supplement until August 31. The B.C. rent supplement will cover up to $500 of your rent if you meet the criteria.
The program is meant to provide support to renters and landlords who've been financially affected by COVID-19.
It's geared primarily towards low or moderate-income tenants who've seen a downward shift in their paychecks in the wake of the economic crisis, according to BC Housing.
Although the program kicked off in April, the government has given its go-ahead to keep it going all the way through August. People who've already applied for the rent supplement in the previous months don't need to apply again unless they're moving to a different place.
These previous-applicants are just going to get an email asking them whether they plan on living at the same place for July and August.
BC Housing will be accepting applications until August 31 and the supplement will become effective from the month received.
"Eligible applications received in June will receive the supplement for June, July and August. Eligible applications received in July will receive the supplement for July and August," they explain.
The money is given directly to the landlord.
The program gives $300 per month to households with no dependents and $500 to households that have dependents.
A couple of other criteria also come into play. To receive this benefit, you have to be either eligible for Employment Insurance, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), or have faced at least a drop of 25% in your monthly income.
You need to provide evidence for whichever category you fit under.
You also have to be paying more than 30% of your monthly income towards rent in order to qualify for the benefit.
In terms of the actual income constraints, applications without dependents should make less than $74,150 per year. This includes both single people and couples.
Those with dependents have to be making under $113,040 per year to qualify.
This program is part of B.C.'s $5 billion COVID-19 Action Plan.