NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The HOPE Portal from Metro Action Commission (MAC) - offering assistance to both renters behind on their rent and landlords located in Nashville - opened to the public Monday.
For those who are behind in paying their rent or utility bills, applications for assistance can be submitted through the HOPE Portal. All applications are submitted online, as MAC says no paper applications are available.
Funding for this round of rent assistance came from the U.S. Department of Treasury. MAC announced the funding late February, saying the city received $20.8 million intended to help those who have been struggling.
To distribute the assistance, MAC has followed a three-phase approach. The first of these phases began March 1, and included residents who had pending evictions cases already filed in the Davidson County General Sessions Court. The second phase, beginning March 8, sought to assist renters who had already applied for rent assistance with MAC in November and December, but were not able to receive assistance because of depleted funds.
The third and final phase of this round of assistance begins with the opening of the HOPE Portal Monday. This phase is said to be for new applicants, who fall under neither of the other two phases, yet are still behind on rent and utilities.
With the $20.8 million provided to the city, MAC estimates this HOPE program will help over 5,000 residents catch up on overdue payments up to a year behind.
"These dollars present a great opportunity to help residents recover from the financial impact of COVID-19," said Dr. Cynthia Croom, executive director of MAC.
MAC has set up multiple means to help those interested apply. The agency has a dedicated call center for potential applicants, which can be reached by calling (615) 862-7368 Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.
Those seeking in-person assistance with either understanding or applying for the program can visit MAC's main office, located at 800 Second Avenue North. There, those without computer access can get help entering their information into the HOPE Portal through on-site kiosks.
MAC says this program is free. Applicants who are asked for payment should report it to the HOPE call center listed above.
NewsChannel 5 spoke with MAC about the HOPE Program on MorningLine Thursday. Watch that segment here.
For those outside of Davidson County who are behind on their rent, Tennessee has assistance available for 91 of the state's 95 counties.