This month, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) marked a major milestone: 50% of the emergency housing vouchers (EHVs) provided through President Biden’s American Rescue Plan have been leased up.
Over 35,000 have been housed , while another 36,000 voucher holders are in the process of searching for a unit or completing the lease process. PHAs continue to i ssue roughly 700 EHVs per week , and the program is on track to reach full lease-up by the end of 2023.
The EHV program is HUD's first-ever special purpose voucher program to address homelessness not specific to veterans. The program is leasing at a rate faster than any previous housing voucher program within HUD and is driving unprecedented collaboration among public housing agencies (PHAs), homeless services organizations, and victim services organizations.
The EHV program provides communities new flexibilities and resources to help individuals and families with higher barriers successfully use housing vouchers. This includes robust administrative funding and a new service fee that allows program administrators to pay for costs necessary to help families find and retain housing. PHAs are required to coordinate with their CoC partners to provide housing search assistance and can also use service fees for landlord incentives, tenants’ security and utility deposits, and even for furniture and household goods, which are often a significant expense for families who are directly transitioning from homelessness.
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