“With rising costs and everything, you have to get help from somewhere,” said Howard Johnson of Hartford.
Financial relief for tenants is on the way. On Tuesday, Governor Ned Lamont announced $11 million will be available for tenants impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I think it’s great. I think there should be more programs to help,” said Michael Myrie of Hartford.
Financial assistance is provided by UniteCT, a state-run program that provides assistance with rent and utilities.
The program was created in 2021 in response to the pandemic. It provides qualified applicants with financial assistance for up to 12 months and aims to prevent evictions.
Myrie said he received funds in 2021 as he faced many financial challenges due to the pandemic.
“I’m very grateful and it was very good. I believe that if I hadn’t received help, I probably would have been on the streets,” said Myrie.
Meanwhile, landlord Errol Lloyd said that over the past two years some of his tenants had struggled to make ends meet and in one case he lost $7,000 in unpaid rent.
“People need help, taxes are going up and it’s not easy for landlords either, it’s not just renters,” Lloyd said.
State officials say payments are made directly to landlords and utility companies on behalf of tenants.
To date, the program has distributed $322 million to more than 11,000 homeowners on behalf of 50,000 households.
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