The Virginia Rent Relief Program (RRP) has two ways to apply:
- Landlords may start an application through Virginia Housing.
- Tenants may start an application through the RRP Support Center.
Below are some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) that property owners and managers have had regarding applications they submit via Virginia Housing’s website, as well as questions from landlords about tenant applications submitted through the RRP Support Center.
Questions about a specific application submitted by a property owner/manager through Virginia Housing can be sent to RentRelief@VirginiaHousing.com.
Questions about a specific application submitted by a tenant through the Support Center can be directed to (703) 962-1884 from Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m to 5:30 p.m or by emailing email@example.com.
What if a landlord wants to evict a tenant for non-payment?
Until July 31, 2021 Virginia law [Chapter 56, Item 4-14], requires landlords to cooperate with the tenant in applying for RRP assistance for nonpayment of rent. If you feel like this is not happening, you should contact an attorney to learn more about your legal rights. There is a national moratorium on eviction for non-payment of rent in place until July 31, 2021. Please contact an attorney for additional information on how this may impact you.
What if a landlord has a tenant who is eligible, but the tenant will not cooperate to provide required signatures/documents?
Landlords should document their efforts to contact the tenant and make the tenant aware that participation in the program is voluntary, but can pay all of their arrears owed since April 1, 2020 and current/future months rent if they are deemed eligible at the time of application.
If a tenant remains uncooperative after efforts are made, you may wish to contact an attorney to learn more about your legal rights.
What if I live in Chesterfield or Fairfax County?
Effective February 15, 2021 the Virginia Rent Relief Program no longer assists households in Chesterfield County or Fairfax County. Landlords in these jurisdictions will need to apply directly through each locality’s program.
Chesterfield County residents who have been impacted by Covid-19 have two ways of applying for rent assistance through current federal funding:
Call ACTS at 804-644-2401. Press 2 and leave a message. (Spanish speaking residents press 5). Calls will be returned in the order in which they are received.
Complete online application at: http://actsrva.org/chesterfield-cera-application/
Chesterfield County landlords may apply on behalf of their tenants by sending completed applications with required documentation attached to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Landlords may find necessary information with instructions at: http://actsrva.org/chesterfield-landlord-information.
Fairfax County residents seeking rent assistance:
Call Fairfax County’s Coordinated Services Planning at 703-222-0880, TTY 711 (Monday through Friday 8AM to 4:30PM)
Website for general information: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/neighborhood-community-services/coordinated-services-planning
Fairfax County landlords seeking rental assistance on behalf of their tenant:
The Fairfax County Landlord Portal can be found on their Eviction Prevention website: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/health-humanservices/eviction-prevention
If a tenant applies for RRP and is approved, but voluntarily moves out of the unit before the payment is received, can I keep the RRP payment?
If a tenant voluntarily moves out after a completed RRP application is submitted but before payment is received, the landlord must request and sign the Property Owner Certification of Voluntary Tenant Vacancy form. Upon completion and submission of this certification, the landlord may keep any back rent that is covering months when the tenant was occupying the unit, as well as a daily prorated amount for the month in which the tenant voluntarily moved out. As a reminder, a complete application must include all documents required of both the landlord and tenant.
After registering and submitting an application with Virginia Housing, how can a landlord track the status of application?
During the review process if there are missing documents or if a reviewer has questions they will reach out to an applicant or send the application back for corrections. Understanding that the objective of RRP is to keep tenants in their homes and make landlords financially whole – documentation needs to be accurate and we will be working with an applicant to ensure that it is. Applications “Under Review” will appear under My Applications. Once the application is “Approved” – we will mark it “Underway” and begin processing the payment. Underway applications will show up under My Grants. The tenants are not notified. It is the responsibility of the landlord to provide updates to the tenant.
How does Virginia Housing notify a landlord that their application has been approved/denied?
Landlords can view their application status at https://www.vhdagrants.com/index.do. Landlords will be contacted via email if additional information is needed and will receive email updates about their application as it moves through the review process. For more information about the Virginia Housing process, visit: virginiahousing.com/rentrelief
What are the average processing times to get a username and password after registering with Virginia Housing or the Support Center?
Once registered for an account with the Support Center, an email with the username and password should be received within a few hours. Once registered with the Virginia Housing system, a username and password is generally sent within approximately ten (10) days. Be sure to check your email’s spam folders.
When a landlord submits an application through Virginia Housing for their tenant, how does the tenant sign the tenant agreement, authorization, and certification?
A tenant signs the tenant agreement and tenant certification, found on pages 5 and 6 of the paper application. Tenants can then provide those documents along with supporting documentation (Example: income documentation) to their landlord. The landlord uploads the application and supporting documents into Virginia Housing’s Grants Management System as part of the application process and submits to Virginia Housing for review. Virginia Housing staff will visually confirm the signatures during review. Virginia Housing also accepts electronic signatures on PDF as well.
When a tenant submits an application through the Support Center, how does the landlord submit the tenant’s ledger, their Virginia W-9, and sign the Landlord Agreement and Certification?
Is there any notification to the tenant during the landlord application process with Virginia Housing or if a payment is made?
All application status updates are communicated to the landlord. It is the responsibility of the landlord to notify tenants of the application status. If a tenant needs to ask Virginia Housing for a status update on a landlord initiated application, they can email RentRelief@VirginiaHousing.com.
How and when will I receive payment?
Once an application is approved, payments are processed as quickly as possible and checks are sent by the U.S. Postal Service to the property owner or manager listed on the Virginia W-9 that was submitted as part of the application.
Due to numerous variables, some of which are out of the control of DHCD (e.g. USPS delivery times), we are unable to offer answers about specific payments. We are actively working to improve our payment procedures.
Please reach out to email@example.com if it has been more than 30 calendar days since your tenant received notice that their application was approved.
If an application is made through Virginia Housing, payments are made via direct deposit.
Does a landlord need to give the tenant his/her EID/Tax information directly when an application is being submitted through the Support Center?
No. If a landlord email is provided by the tenant when they start an application, a link is emailed to the landlord, providing a secure link through which the Virginia W-9, the ledger, and the RRP Landlord Tenant Agreement, signed by the landlord, can be submitted.
If the landlord’s email is not provided with the tenant’s application, these documents must be submitted by email with a subject line that has the tenant’s application number and last name to firstname.lastname@example.org by either the tenant or the landlord. NOTE: Any emails sent to this address that are not related to landlord documents will not be returned.
DHCD strongly advises that tenants and landlords cooperate with one another to provide a landlord email to ensure applications are processed and payments are received as quickly as possible.
If a tenant asks me (landlord) to submit documentation for their tenant application, how can I obtain an application number?
Each tenant receives an application number when they initiate the application process through the RRP Support Center. Landlords and tenants should communicate with one another and share this information.
Who prepares the 2020 1099 form for RRP funds received by the property management company and remitted to these landlords?
The organization that issued the payment to the property management company/owner is responsible for preparing and delivering the 1099.
If a property is purchased with a tenant(s) already in place and the lease is signed from a previous owner, how do we properly complete the landlord information if the W-9 and the lease are not matching?
The new owner should provide their Virginia W-9 as well as proof of sale of the property as an attachment to their application, showing the previous owner has sold the property to the owner listed on the Virginia W-9 submitted with the application.
Are Federal W-9’s acceptable or must they be Virginia W-9’s?
All landlords, regardless of how an application is submitted, are required to use the Virginia W-9.