Tenants behind on rent or utility bills may be eligible for emergency funds available to help Texas renters pay rent and utility bills (including past-due rent and utilities). Find information on eviction assistance programs below.
Get Rent and Mortgage Assistance
You should apply for any rent assistance that you may qualify for. However, you can only receive one rental assistance payment per month. If you apply to two different programs and both give you help for the same month, you will have to pay one back right away. Keep records to prove you applied.
Texas Rent Relief. If you're behind on bills, the Texas Rent Relief Program can assist with up to 15 months' worth of rent and utilities. They can even help with any reasonable late fees you may owe. You can take part in the program whether or not your landlord participates.
Local Rent Assistance Programs. The legal aid community is maintaining two online spreadsheets with contact information for local rent assistance programs. Make sure to check each source to find a program serving your area.
- Spreadsheet A: Texas Emergency Rental Assistance Program offices
- Spreadsheet B: Other Local Rent Assistance Programs
- Consumer Financial Protection Protection Bureau Rent Help Finder
City and County Websites. Go to your city and county websites to see what help may be available. Many local governments help with rent — for example, the Houston-Harris County Emergency Rental Assistance Program.
Note that some programs require landlord participation. Others do not.
Mortgage Assistance. You can talk to your lender or servicer about getting forbearance. Forbearance temporarily pauses your mortgage payments.
There are also local programs that can help with mortgage payments.
- Spreadsheet C: Texas Emergency Mortgage Assistance Service Providers by Organization
- Spreadsheet D: Texas Emergency Mortgage Assistance Service Providers by County (Download and type in your county to perform a search.)
Texas Eviction Diversion Program
If you have an upcoming eviction hearing, take advantage of the Texas Eviction Diversion Program in addition to other assistance programs. The Texas Supreme Court requires judges to pause your case for at least 60 days and seal the case records if:
- The landlord has a pending application with any rent relief program, or
- The landlord and tenant agree to participate in the Texas Eviction Diversion Program.
Note that if your landlord gets direct payments from the Texas Rent Relief program, they may have even explicitly agreed to participate in the Texas Eviction Diversion Program — among other things. See landlord duties under the program.
Remember, your landlord must get the court's permission before they can forcibly evict you. But be aware that an eviction case on your record can make it more difficult to find housing in the future. Sealing your eviction case under the Texas Eviction Diversion Program can be a big help if you ever look for a new home.
Fast-Track Rent Assistance Application. If you have an upcoming eviction hearing or are facing utility shutoffs, you can apply online and then fast track your application by calling 833-989-7386. Have your case or docket number ready when you call.
Need Help Applying?
Find legal aid organizations that can help you apply for the Texas Rent Relief Program and the Texas Eviction Diversion Program.Learn More
More Eviction Information & Resources
Eviction Process Overview
Learn about the eviction process, your rights as a tenant, and the help available.
Guide: COVID-19 Eviction Answer
How to respond to an eviction lawsuit during the COVID-19 emergency.
Appeal an Eviction
You can appeal to County Court if you lose your eviction case in Justice Court.
For Courts and Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs
A directory of legal aid organizations that can help answer legal questions, guide parties through assistance applications, and in some cases provide representation. See which organizations serve your county.Learn More