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After a billion dollars in assistance, millions of Texas homeowners and renters not sure they can make October payment

A state program that has already distributed a billion dollars now has another billion in funding from the feds.

A report out last month found that on average in DFW, renters are paying 2.7% more than DFW homeowners are paying for mortgage (plus property taxes). In the Houston area, renters are paying on average 9.4% more than mortgagers.

Many Texas renters not confident they'll make this month's rent

Many renters can’t keep up. All these months into the pandemic, more than a third of Texas tenants aren’t sure they can make this month’s housing payment, according to the U.S. Census Pulse Survey released Sept. 22. That’s 1,729,724 renters who have "no" or "slight" confidence they can come up with the October rent.

Couple that with this: Last month, The Eviction Lab at Princeton reported that Dallas and Houston had weeks where they hit pandemic highs for the number of evictions. In the week of Sept. 12-19, Dallas had 759 eviction filings. And the week of Sept. 19-26, Houston had 1280 eviction filings.

More help for Texas renters

The Texas Supreme Court has issued an order to extend the Texas Eviction Diversion Program again, until Dec. 1. 

To date, the Texas Rent Relief Program has paid out about a billion dollars. On the program’s dashboard, you might have noticed that is most of the total funding amount that was set aside.

If you look at the counties getting the most assistance, the DFW area has gotten more rent relief than any other part of Texas: more than $293 Million in Dallas, Tarrant, Collin, and Denton Counties so far.

The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs says it has received another billion dollars from the second American Rescue Plan. Administrators say will start disbursing that money when the initial $1.177 billion of funding runs out, which probably won't take long.

If you are a renter and need legal help, there is this legal aid eviction portal. Additionally, the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas has created a comprehensive page of local resources

Many Texas homeowners not confident about making the October mortgage

But, it’s not just renters struggling. According to that same Census Pulse Survey, 1,115,809 Texas homeowners also have "no" or "slight" confidence they can make this month’s mortgage. There is a program available to help them, too. That program is based on your income and Area Median Income. Click here to learn more about that.

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