BCDC and Metro West CD ERA Program

Brookline CDC and Metro West CD Emergency Rent Assistance (ERA) Program

As a result of Brookline’s incredibly high rents, many residents find themselves in very unstable housing situations and in need of financial assistance. This is why the Brookline CDC has partnered with Metro West Collaborative Development, Inc. (Metro West CD) to create the Emergency Rent Assistance (ERA) Program for residents of Brookline.

This program is supported by a grant from the Brookline Community Foundation and we appreciate their generous support.

The Brookline CDC is committed to addressing ongoing needs for emergency rental assistance and is actively seeking additional support for these efforts. However, we currently have limited resources and will utilize them on a first come first served basis.

The ERA Program application will open and close depending on the availability of funds. As of the first week in January 2024, the ERA program has exhausted its funds and the application is closed.

BCDC is proud to say that the ERA program was able to stabilize the tenancy of 13 households in Brookline over the course of about 1 month. We are currently working diligently to replenish these funds so that we can continue to provide this critical resource. We will announce when the application will be opening again as soon as we know. Thank you for your patience.

Program Overview

  • Applicants are eligible for up to $5,000 of assistance, paid to the landlord for a backlog of rent owed.
  • Applications will be processed on a first-come-first-served basis, but applications MUST BE COMPLETE (including the Landlord Participation Agreement that the landlord must sign and submit) in order to be processed.

Household Eligibility

  • A “household” in this context is defined as one or more people whose principal residence is a rental unit within the Town of Brookline and who are related by blood, marriage, law, or who have otherwise evidenced a stable inter-dependent relationship.

Examples of a stable interdependent relationship: an unmarried couple, siblings who live together, roommates who live together and are both on the lease, parent and child(ren), grandparent and grandchild(ren), adult child and elderly parent, etc.

  • The household must have experienced a temporary setback or incurred an unexpected expense that created a temporary financial hardship resulting in the household falling behind on rent. Applicants MUST be able to describe what happened, provide documentation of the expense incurred, and provide documentation of the amount of rent owed.
  • This financial assistance is intended to stabilize a housing situation. Households requiring ongoing financial support are not eligible. The situation must be temporary.

Examples of applicant situations that are eligible:

  • A currently employed person that had an illness or injury that kept them from work temporarily resulting in unpaid rent,
  • A person who had an unexpected accident which resulted in large medical bills that prevented that household from paying rent,
  • A currently employed person that experienced a previous, temporary loss of employment that prevented that household from paying rent, etc.

Examples of applicant situations that are not eligible:

  • Applicants who have lost their job and have yet to find another job,
  • Applicants that have sustained an injury and are unable to work permanently, etc.

Income Eligibility

The total income of the applicant and all other members of the applicant’s household aged 18 and older may not exceed 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for the greater Boston area adjusted for family size.

An applicant’s total household income at the time of application cannot exceed the following limits:

Persons in a household 1 2 3 4 5 6
Income Limit of 80% of AMI (2023) $82,950 $94,800 $106,650 $118,450 $127,950 $137,450

Application Process

All potential program participants must complete an online application and submit required documentation. An application will not be considered complete until a Landlord Participation Agreement, which must be signed by them, is also submitted.

The ERA Program application will open and close depending on the availability of funds.

Need Assistance with the Application?

The Special Projects Coordinator at Metro West CD is available to assist individuals in the completion of their application and can accommodate households with limited English proficiency, as well as disabilities that may impede their ability to complete the application.

Contact Special Projects Coordinator at Robyn@metrowestcd.org.

TTY users please call 711.

Applicants have the right to request a reasonable accommodation, which may include a change to a policy, procedure, or practice to afford a person with a disability an equal opportunity to participate fully in the housing program.