Delaware County Emergency Rental Assistance

DELCO Emergency Rental Assistance (DELCO ERA) helps renters who suffered disruption and loss of income during or due to the COVID-19 pandemic with rent and utility assistance.

Since April 2021, DELCO ERA has expended 100% of the initial $37.275 million allocation of Emergency Rental Assistance funds which helped 5,150 low-income renters stay in their homes.

The U.S. Treasury and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have provided Delaware County with $36.315 million in additional funding, which is helping DELCO ERA continue to serve the COVID recovery needs of thousands more tenants and landlords in Delaware County.

Delaware County wishes to thank our community partners, our Program Manager, Capital Access and applicants and landlords who contribute to the remarkable success of DELCO ERA.

This is a Team Effort. Onward!

CUSTOMER SERVICE:
Phone 484-729-4200
Grant Stats

How To Apply

See the Application Process section below for an overview of the steps in the process.

Apply In-Person (by appointment only):

In-person events are available if you...

  • Need technological help
  • Need language services
  • Need access to a computer
  • Do not have an email address
  • Need help scanning and uploading documents
  • Would prefer in-person assistance

Status updates and appeals are not available at in person events.

We offer in-person appointments at multiple locations on different days. Please take note of the day and location and click the corresponding link to schedule:

  • When: Saturdays
  • Where: Upper Darby Office (Fourth Floor)
  • 20 South 69th St.
  • Upper Darby, PA 19082

  • Schedule at Upper Darby*

*An email is needed to register. If you do not have an email, please call us at 484-729-4200 to schedule your appointment.

Application Process

1 REGISTRATION

Registration REGISTRATION (1 of 2)
  • Click Tenant Registration link.
  • Provide your name, email, address, and preferred language.
REGISTRATION (2 of 2)
  • Go to the link provided in the Step 1 confirmation email.
  • Provide additional information to help expedite your registration submission.
  • Provide your landlord and utility information.

2 FULL APPLICATION

Full Application

  • Go to your personal Applicant Portal link to access the Full Application
  • Complete and submit your Full Application.

3 DOCUMENT UPLOADS

Document Uploads Go to your Applicant Portal to upload verification documents such as Identification, Income sources, Lease, Utility Statement, etc.

4 VERIFICATION REVIEW

Verification Review
  • Respond to your Case Manager as soon as possible when you receive a call, text, or email to request clarification.
  • Continue to review the status of your application through your Applicant Portal.

5 GRANT GENERATION

Grant Generation
  • Look for your ERA grant approval notice by email.
  • Read your grant agreement for accuracy.
  • Sign the grant agreement online.

6 PAYMENT

Payment Check your Applicant Portal to confirm your landlord and utility has been paid.

Register at Delaware County ERA Registration . The Application Process has multiple parts:

  1. Registration. This is a two-step process. Step 1 is registering your information at the link above. You will then receive an email to complete Step 2. This step asks you to answer a few questions about your financial status to determine eligibility for the Program. You must complete both steps to proceed.
  2. Once you have completed both Step 1 and Step 2 in the registration process a case manager will review your information.
    • If you fail the Threshold Criteria, you will be notified by email with the reason.
    • If it is determined that you pass the Threshold Criteria, you will get an email from us inviting you to submit the Full Application.
  3. Once you are invited to apply, you will receive an email to submit your Full Application and all required documentation through your Portal.
    Verification documentation could include:
    • Photo Identification
    • Evidence of Income Loss
    • Evidence of Past Due rent and/or utilities
    • Lease
  4. When you have submitted your Full Application and complete set of verification documents, any grant for which you may be eligible will be calculated and paid quickly.

Threshold Criteria

  1. Rental property address is located in the County.
  2. Applicant household has suffered income loss and/or disruption during or due to Covid-19.
  3. Applicant household income is no more than 80% AMI for household size.
  4. Applicant household is at risk of homelessness or housing instability as documented with a past-due rent or utility notice, or an eviction notice.

Prioritization of Applications

Priority 1 is assigned to any application that meets at least one of the following criteria:
  • Household Income is 50% or less of Area Median Income (AMI) for household of that size.
  • Household with at least 1 person unemployed who has an active claim with a state Office of Unemployment for at least the 90 days prior to date of Registration with this Program.
  • Household facing eviction in the Delaware County court system for the reason of non-payment of rent.

Priority 2 is assigned to any application that meets the Delco ERA’s Threshold Criteria, and does not meet any Priority 1 criteria.

Priority 1 applications begin processing before Priority 2 applications.

Landlords

If any of your tenants are behind on rent payments, encourage them to apply for the DELCO ERA. Register yourself and/or your company as a landlord to make their application process as smooth as possible.

If you have five (5) or more tenants behind on their rent, and they need assistance with the registration process, please let us know. We would be happy to schedule an in-person intake event with you and have a Delco ERA team member come to your offices to assist with the registration process. Please contact Katrina Sommer at ksommer@capitalaccessinc.com to schedule an in-person intake event today.

There is no cap on the amount of DELCO ERA rental assistance. The amount of the grant is calculated based on up to 12 months of past due rent and utility for renters who earn 80% of Area Median Income or below and experience disruption and/or income loss due to the COVID pandemic. In addition, many applicants will qualify for 3 months future rent based on their household income. We need your assistance to verify the lease terms and the amount of past due rent since April, 2020.


What to Expect:

Step 1: Registration. This enables our information system to link you with every applicant in your rental property and/or portfolio and set your own Landlord Portal. The Landlord Portal is where you can upload verification documents and payments forms so that we may expedite a direct payment to you on behalf of your tenants.

Step 2: Email with link to Landlord Portal. Once you are registered in the system, you will receive an email with a unique link to your personal Landlord/Property Management portal.

Step 3: Email with Request to Upload Landlord Affidavit and IRS Form W-9 for Payment. For each approved Tenant that completes their application, you will receive an email request to upload through your Portal the following documentation based on a specific Tenant.

  • Landlord Affidavit where you can verify lease terms and provide an itemization of past due rent
  • IRS W-9 Form

Please make sure to complete each step to receive payments. If you have more than one Tenant, you may receive multiple requests for documentation; however, you will only need to register once.

Applications for Subsequent Assistance

On December 15, 2021, DELCO ERA will open applications for Subsequent Assistance for tenants who received assistance, but still face housing instability. DELCO ERA will process first-time applicants and subsequent assistance applicants with highest needs. DELCO ERA will prioritize processing of applications as follows:

  1. New applicants with past due rent and/or utility assistance needs*
  2. Subsequent applicants with past due rent and/or utility assistance needs*
  3. New and subsequent applicants who have housing instability needs, but no past due rent or utilities and request only future rent and/or utility assistance
  4. *Includes applicants with eviction docket numbers or other immediate housing instability challenges.

Applicants interested in submitting a subsequent application are encouraged to complete an Expression of Interest form through their DELCO ERA Applicant Portal. You can find the link to your DELCO ERA Applicant Portal from the cover page of your grant agreement.

FAQs

Applicant

  1. One or more individuals within the household has qualified for unemployment benefits OR experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced other financial hardship during or due to the coronavirus pandemic; AND
  2. One or more individuals within the household can demonstrate a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability; AND
  3. The household is a low-income family.
No, you do not have to be unemployed to qualify, but at least one person in your household must have experienced direct or indirect economic hardship during the pandemic. Priority will be given to households with at least one person who has qualified for state unemployment benefits for at least the 90 days prior to the date of Registration in this program.
No, we encourage our applicants to seek employment to ensure their long-term housing stability. An increase in household income after awarding of a grant under DELCO ERA will not affect your grant. It may, however, affect your ability to reapply for future assistance.
Providing U.S. citizenship documentation is not a program requirement.
Your address is based on your lease, not your driver’s license.
You may submit a new registration after the last day of the last month of the current assistance. Please refer to the term listed in your Grant Agreement for the exact date. You will be in line with all other registrants. As long as funds remain available, when you reach the front of the line you will be invited to submit a full application.
Yes – applicants currently involved in eviction proceedings may apply for DELCO ERA assistance. You are considered to be “in eviction” if you have a docket number from the Delaware County court system for an eviction case. If you have already been evicted, DELCO ERA will not pay your former landlord. You may be eligible for assistance at your new rental address.
DELCO ERA will not pay your former landlord. The program is intended to help households stay in their current home. You may be eligible for assistance at your new rental address.
Yes, but applications are limited to one per household and the income of all members of the household must be documented and included in the application for funding to determine eligibility.
Yes. – An applicant currently residing in an affordable housing unit (or subsidized housing) may be eligible for assistance. Rental assistance is based on the applicant’s portion of the rent.
A household is every person living in the rental unit, including all children and adults, whether or not they are related.

HUD INCOME LIMITS 2022 for Delaware County, PA

Household Size

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

Very Low Income (50%)*

$36,900

$42,200

$47,450

$52,700

$56,950

$61,150

$65,350

$69,600

Low Income (80%)

$59,050

$67,450

$75,900

$84,300

$91,050

$97,800

$104,550

$111,300

County residents earning up to 80% of Area Median Income (AMI) are eligible for ERA assistance. *Priority will be given to households at or below 50% AMI. The income of every person 18 years or older, who is not in high school full time, is included in household income. Social Security or Disability payments made to a household for a child are included as income for the parent or guardian.
Following U.S. Treasury guidance, if an applicant has not yet uploaded income documentation, your Case Manager Managers attempts to determine if your household is income-eligible based on the census tract in which the household lives. If census data is not available, the Case Manager requests that the applicant submit income verification documents so we may calculate income eligibility for the program. These documents include:
  • A 2020 IRS 1040 tax return is the most efficient document for income eligibility;
OR
  • 3rd Party Income Verification Certification from a government or non-profit agency who conducted an income verification for the applicant in 2020;
OR
  • Traditional sources of income verification such as pay stubs, w-2, 1099 and related income streams.

If after three attempts by DELCO ERA to obtain income verification documents, none of these documents are available, and if there does not appear a pattern of fraud, waste and/or abuse, we can accept an Attestation of Income from the Applicant.

We welcome and encourage property managers to help applicants obtain and upload income and related verification documents.

Yes – An applicant's bank account and cash on hand are considered and factored into our income calculation. It is very rare that such assets are large enough to disqualify an applicant.
Yes, for Priority 1 applicants only, we may be able to offer up to three (3) months of assistance for future rent and utilities.
Yes, Electric, Gas, Heating Oil, Water/Sewer, and Trash that is not included in your rent is eligible for assistance if you meet the eligibility criteria. You may receive assistance with up to three utilities from the following list. The account address must match your address.
  • PECO
  • AQUA American
  • Chester Water Auth.
  • Action Fuel Oil
  • Cardinal USA
  • Cass Oil Co.
  • DC Fuel Oil Co.
  • DELCORA
  • FC HAAB Energy
  • Ferro Fuel Oil Inc.
  • Meenan
  • Oil Patch Fuel
  • Petro
  • Royal Petroleum
  • Southwest Delaware County Municipal Authority
  • Tioga Fuel Co.

You may also consider applying to the LIHEAP Program for your heating needs.

Cable, Internet, cell phone and other telecommunications are not eligible for assistance from this Program. For assistance with the cost of your Internet service, the Federal Communications Commission may be an option - www.fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit

Utilities that are included in rent are considered part of your rent.
For Priority 1 applicants, the DELCO ERA program can cover up to the limit of 18 months of total assistance for rent and utilities, which may include up to 3 months of future assistance for each application.

For Priority 2 applicants, the program can cover up to the limit of 15 months of total assistance for past-due rent and utilities.

Past-due rent and utilities may go as far back as April 1, 2020.

It does not matter if a month of DELCO ERA assistance is for rent only, utility only, or rent and utility -- it counts as one month toward the total assistance limit.

If your household is temporarily homeless, without a permanent residential address, or are in a challenging situation with your current landlord where it is not likely they will be able to remain in their current rental unit, you may be eligible for Re-Housing assistance. To receive Re-Housing assistance, you must have a lease that A) has a lease with a term of not less than four months, and B) commences no earlier than the date of your DELCO ERA application, and no later than 60 days after the date of your application.

Eligible assistance includes:
  • Security deposit OR last month rent, not to exceed on month rent
  • Pro-rated rent for the move-in month
  • For Priority 1 applicants, three months future rent
  • Utility deposit if required by the utility to establish an account
No. Rent that has already been paid is not eligible for DELCO ERA assistance. You may be eligible for assistance with rent still due, and future rent.
Mortgage assistance is not eligible under this program.
No, please refer to the FCC for assistance. You may visit: https://www.fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit
There is no dollar limit on the size of the grant award. Applicants are eligible to receive up to fifteen (15) months of back rent and certain utilities that are not included in rent, including any previous assistance from DELCO ERA. Priority 1 applicants are eligible for up to eighteen (18) months of assistance, which may include up to three (3) months of future rent and utility assistance, including any previous assistance from DELCO ERA.

Even though there is no specific cap on the amount of rental assistance, our staff is directed to do anti-fraud, waste and abuse analysis which includes:

  • Require submission of a signed and current lease that is compared to a Landlord Affidavit for consistency.
  • Rental Housing to Income ratio affordability analysis. If the rent far exceeds what a low-income tenant could reasonably afford, we reserve the option to conduct a deeper investigation into affordability and legitimacy of the rent charged.
  • Reviewing public ownership records.
  • Requesting additional documentation from the applicant and/or landlord.

Once we get all required documents from the applicant and landlord, and determine the applicant is eligible for an award, checks are emailed to the landlord and utilities, usually within five business days.
Please submit your application online at www.delco-era.com. There is a two-step process so please make sure you complete both step one and step two.
Applying online is smooth and user friendly. If you are unable to apply online and would like to schedule an in-person meeting please call (484) 729-4200.
A DELCO ERA team member can assist you with an in-person application session. Call (484) 729-4200 to schedule.
We have language translation services available.
Everyone who lives in the home or apartment, including any other people listed on the lease, is considered part of the household, whether they are related or not, and must be included in the application.
If you have Gmail, it is likely you will find the email in your Promotions folder in Gmail. You should also check your Spam or Trash folders.

If you still cannot locate the email, you may also call (484) 729-4200 to do an Assisted Intake over the phone.

An email will be automatically sent to the email address you used for registration. If you have not received an email, please check your spam filter. If you are still unable to locate the email, please register again at www.delco-era.com and double check your email address is entered correctly.
  • If you registered using an email address of a family member or friend and you want to change it, you must re-register.
  • If you registered using the wrong address, please inform your Case Manager.
The registration is two parts, please still go ahead and complete step 1 and verify your email address. As you complete step 2, you will be asked to provide your landlord email. If you do not have one, there is a button that allows you to submit a request for assistance here. Please complete the request, and an agent will research your landlord to find an email address. If they are successful, you will be informed of the landlord’s email.
An email address is a requirement of this program. If they are unable to create one on their own we are happy to help by scheduling an in-person appointment. Please have them call (484) 729-4200 and select option 2.
The best way to start the process is by you, the applicant, registering for the Program. As part of the registration process, you will be asked to provide your landlord’s email address. Once you register, your landlord will be invited to register for the Program. Alternatively, you may provide your landlord with the following link to register: https://capgms-delco.azurewebsites.net/registration?registeras=landlord
Yes. Applicants (and landlords) are assigned to a Case Manager to work with through the application process.
We have received a significant number of applications. Our Case Managers are working diligently to assist all Registered applicants. As soon as your Registration is reviewed, you will receive an email inviting you to submit your Full Application and your verification documents, and a link to get started.

Once you submit your Full Application your Case Manager will reach out to you to ask if you have questions or need assistance with uploading your verification documents.

When we invite you to submit your Full Application, we also reach out directly to your landlord for payment processing and other required documents.

To be eligible for 100% of monthly rent and utilities, every adult on the lease must participate in the DELCO ERA application. This means they must provide their income documentation, and list the people, if any, that they bring to the household. If they choose not to participate for any reason, the monthly rent and utilities for a DELCO ERA award will be pro-rated. For instance, if three lessees are listed on the lease, and the Applicant is the only one participating, DELCO ERA will cover one-third (1/3) of the rent and utility amounts.
Two options are available if ther is another adult listed as a lessee (renter) on the lease no longer lives there:
  1. You can work with the Landlord to sign a lease amendment to include only the individual(s) still responsible for paying the rent, and provide that amendment document to DELCO ERA.
  2. We will pro-rate the rent and utilities amount.

    For example, if you and two others are listed as lessees, and the two others have vacated, then DELCO ERA will pay for one-third (1/3) of the rent and utilities.

    If you and two others are listed as lessees, and one of the others has vacated, and the other lessee is participating in the program, DELCO ERA will pay for two-thirds of the rent and utilities.

You can get the status of your request for funding by logging into your unique Applicant Portal.
Refer to the email you received after registering for instructions on accessing your Applicant Portal.

If you cannot locate the email please attempt to re-register using the same email address. The system will not allow you to apply twice but it will generate and automatic email message with the link to your Application Portal.

Applicants wishing to file an appeal of a decision about their case can obtain a DELCO ERA Appeal Form from your Applicant Portal if the case has been failed, or from your Case Manager.

The form includes:

  1. Date of Appeal
  2. DELCO ERA Application ID#
  3. Email Address
  4. Name
  5. Mailing Address
  6. The DELCO ERA decision they are appealing
  7. Date of the DELCO ERA decision
  8. A complete and concise reason for the appeal
  9. Documentation to support their claim, if any.

Program guidance from the U.S. Department of Treasury or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania may not be appealed. Landlords may not appeal a DELCO ERA decision.

For questions about the appeal form, please contact your Case Manager. After your appeal has been filed, your Case Manager has no additional information about your appeal.

Appeals may be submitted to:

  • humanservices@delcohsa.org
  • OR
  • DELCO ERA Appeals
  • Delaware County Human Services
  • 20 South 69th Street
  • Upper Darby, PA 19082

Delaware County will provide the applicant with a written decision within 60 days of receipt of the appeal.

If you have questions about your submitted appeal, you may contact Delaware County Human Services at 610-713-2323 or humanservices@delcohsa.org.

Second Appeal:
Decisions on appeals by the County may be further appealed to the Delaware County Court of Common Pleas under 2 Pa. C.S. § 752.

The Court of Common Pleas can be contacted through the Office of Judicial Support, (610) 891-4388 and Legal Aid of Southeastern PA can be reached at (877) 429-5994.

Any award will be made directly to your landlord or property management company unless the landlord is unresponsive, in which case it will go to you. Likewise, any utility assistance will be made directly to your utility provider.
We are prepared to process the payments quickly. Once we have received the required verification documents from you and your landlord, and the application is approved for funding, a grant agreement will be emailed to you for your electronic signature. Once also signed by this program the funds will be released, usually within five business days.
The award is based on:
  1. The amount of past-due rent, less any rental benefit previously received for the months requested.
  2. plus
  3. The amount of past-due utilities, less any utility benefit previously received for the months requested.

For Priority 1 Applicants, there is a limit of 18 months of total assistance, including funding already received from DELCO ERA, which may include up to three months of future rent and utility.

For Priority 2 Applicants, there is a limit of 15 months of total assistance, including funding already received from DELCO ERA, for past-due rent and utilities only.

You may still apply for the DELCO ERA Program. DELCO ERA utility assistance may be provided toward any eligible utility balance.
An Applicant that received rental assistance from another source in the past year is eligible to apply for DELCO ERA and may still be eligible to receive assistance from the Program. Applicants who previously received rent assistance from another source shall not receive DELCO ERA assistance for the months where they previously received rent assistance, unless an outstanding balance still remains for any of those months. You will be asked to provide your Grant Agreement from the other program(s) that provide assistance.

Landlord/Property Manager

The Digital Divide, especially among lower income populations is a challenge when running a direct service program with an online application. By having Landlords register we reduce the risk of bad data in the system because of data entry errors.

Registration with the DELCO-ERA does not bind the landlords to the program. It does make filling out the Registration easier for your tenants who apply. If you choose not to participate then the tenant(s) will receive any approved rent assistance.

An email address is a requirement of this program. If you are unable to create one on your own we would be delighted to help by scheduling an in-person appointment. Please call (484) 729-4200 and select option 2.
Registering online is smooth and user friendly. If you would rather schedule an in-person meeting please call (484) 729-4200.
You should not register your tenant single-handedly. We recommend you support and collaborate with your tenant for their application. Your tenant may find it particularly helpful if you were to invite them to your management office and assist them in completing the application and supplying the requisite documents.
Yes, you can still register as a landlord even if you do not live in Delaware County as long as your rental property is located within Delaware County.
There is no dollar limit on the size of the grant award. Priority 1 applicants are eligible to receive up to eighteen (18) total months of assistance, including funding already received from DELCO ERA, which may include up to 3 months of future rent and utilities. For Priority 2 applicants, the maximum assistance is up to fifteen (15) months of past-due rent and utilities.

Even though there is no specific cap on the amount of rental assistance, our staff is directed to do anti-fraud, waste and abuse analysis which includes:

  • Require submission of a signed and current lease that is compared to the required Landlord Affidavit for consistency.
  • Rental Housing to Income ratio affordability analysis. If the rent far exceeds what a low-income tenant could reasonably afford, we reserve the option to conduct a deeper investigation into affordability and legitimacy of the rent charged.
  • Reviewing public ownership records.
  • Requesting additional documentation from the applicant and/or landlord.

Only two documents are required from the landlord for each tenant who has applied to DELCO ERA:
  1. Landlord Affidavit
  2. W-9
Landlords must submit a Landlord Affidavit where they:
  1. Confirm terms and conditions of the lease for the particular tenant.
  2. Disclose if Landlord and tenant participated in the PHFA Rent Relief Program in 2020.
  3. Specify month by month for past due rent.
  4. Specify which utilities, if any, are included in rent.
  5. Commit to cooperate with assisting the tenant to obtain and provide verification documents to expedite processing.
  6. Commit not proceed with any evictions for:
    1. First-time applications: two months after the last day for which the Applicant’s rent is paid by DELCO ERA.
    2. Subsequent applications: one month after the last day for which the Applicant’s rent is paid by DELCO ERA.
  7. Commit to apply the DELCO ERA grant funds received on behalf of the tenant towards specific months as stated in the Landlord Affidavit.
Delco ERA is not able to provide assistance for tenants who do not apply for the program.
This information is collected strictly for program reports required by the U.S. Treasury, the source of ERA funds. Your number is used by DELCO ERA only for the required reports, and is stored securely.
A W-9 form is a way for you to provide your Taxpayer Identification Number (also known as your business’ Employer ID Number (EIN) or your Social Security Number (SSN)). ERA is taxable income for a rental property business. The DELCO ERA program will send one 1099 form to every landlord that receives payment from the program.
DELCO ERA is not qualified to provide tax advice. Please consult a tax professional.
In the email you receive, simply click the “Get Check” link. Then print the check and deposit or cash it as you would any other check. Here is a sample email:
Sample Email

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