Rental Assistance Programs
The purpose of rental assistance is to help low-income households secure decent rental housing by providing assistance that fills the gap between the family's ability to pay and total housing costs.
In most programs, participating households must find housing that meets program requirements on the private rental market. Assisted units are regularly inspected to insure that they meet program standards for safety. Written agreements are signed between the owner, tenant and agency outlining their respective rights and responsibilities. Program participants pay a share of the rent based on their household income, and BHDC pays the rental assistance amount directly to the landlord each month.
Those selected for the program receive counseling on program requirements, tenant rights and responsibilities, fair housing, housing search and negotiating with landlords. Landlords are provided with detailed information about the program and receive monthly checks directly from the agency. Housing counselors assist both tenant and landlord throughout program participation.
Participants may choose housing anywhere in Berkshire County and lease it through BHDC. They are also able to select housing anywhere in the state through a network of regional agencies that contract with the state Department of Housing and Community Development. Out-of-state transfers can also be arranged under some programs.