rural houseIf you’re an American who lives in a rural county, you may be eligible to get a government grant to help your housing situation. The Rural Housing Stability Assistance Program (RHSP) is designed to provide assistance for rural counties to re-house or improve the housing situations of individuals and families who are homeless, at risk of homelessness, or in the worst housing situations, stabilize the housing of individuals and families who are at risk of becoming homeless, and improve the ability of the lowest-income residents to afford stable housing.

Grant assistance through this government grant is available for rent, mortgage, and utility assistance; relocation assistance; short-term emergency lodging; new construction of buildings to provide transitional or permanent housing; acquisition of real property to provide supportive services or transitional or permanent rental housing; rehabilitation of structures to provide supportive services or transitional or permanent rental housing; leasing; rental assistance; operating costs of transitional and permanent rental housing; rehabilitation and repairs to make premises habitable; and supportive services.

Eligibility extends to individuals and families who are homeless, at risk of homelessness, or are in a “worst housing situation.” Worst housing situation is defined as housing that has serious health and safety defects and at least one major system that has failed or is failing.

This program is a result of  the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, as amended by the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing Act of 2009 (HEARTH Act). It’s administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). HUD reviews applications, rates, and ranks those meeting threshold requirements, and prepares a Grant Agreement for those applications selected for this government grant.

Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines. Processing of applications will take place in HUD Field Offices and at HUD Headquarters, and selection of successful applicants will take place at HUD Headquarters. HUD will make its final selections and obligate funds as soon as the applications can be processed.

There are several ways to find out more, if you’re interested in this program. You can visit the HUD Homelessness Resource Exchange (HRE) website and read their FAQs or use the Virtual Help Desk to have any of your questions answered and get help with getting started with applying for this government grant. You can also contact your local HUD office. Or you can email [email protected] or call 202-708-1590.

This government grant can help you get the help you need for your rural home.