Wondering if you qualify for the Rental Assistance Program in BC? Read our article to find out more about this great program.
The rising cost of rent in British Columbia can make it hard for those with low income to make ends meet. However, renters in British Columbia may be eligible for the Rental Assistance Program, providing financial assistance to help people pay their rent. In this article, we’ll tell you more about getting rental assistance in BC and how to apply.
Related Read: How Much Should I Be Spending on Rent?
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What Is the BC Rental Assistance Program (RAP)?
The BC Rental Assistance Program (RAP) is a great program designed to help British Columbian renters who are struggling to pay their rent. The program helps by providing financial assistance directly to eligible applicants in order to match the percentage of their annual household income towards rent payments. To qualify, you must be a resident of British Columbia, meet certain residency criteria, and show that you would otherwise miss rent payments due to financial difficulties.
Who Is Eligible for British Columbia’s RAP Assistance?
In general, the rental assistance program is designed to help you so long as you meet these requirements:
- A portion or all of your income is generated from employment.
- You and your family have a combined pre-tax gross annual income of $40,000 or less.
- If you have one or more dependents—such as an unmarried stepchild, adopted child, legal ward, etc.—who relies on you as a primary support.
- You file your annual taxes.
- You have fewer than $100,000 in assets.
- 30% or more of your total household income goes toward paying for your rent. Alternatively, if you live in a manufactured home or trailer that you are paying a pad rental fee on.
- You must have been living in British Columbia for the full year before your application date.
- All other program residency requirements were met.
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How Do I Apply for RAP Assistance?
To apply for RAP, you must first meet all of the eligibility criteria as laid out in the previous paragraph. If you qualify, you can apply online, in-person or by mail once you fill out an application form. Once your application is received, you’ll be notified as to whether you’re approved or ineligible.
How Much Rent Can I Afford With RAP Assistance?
The amount of assistance received will depend on each individual’s situation and eligibility criteria, such as income level and family size, so it’s important to find out more about specific requirements before applying.
How Often Can I Receive RAP Assistance Payments?
RAP will deposit recurring assistance payments on the last working day of each month. Since most monthly rent payments are required on the first of the month, this means that eligible recipients will get financial assistance at least a day before their rent is due. Those registered for RAP get re-evaluated every year on their birth month to ensure that they are still eligible for the program, so don’t forget to set a reminder so this doesn’t come as a surprise.
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