Emergency Rental Assistance (BERA)
The BERA Program provides rental and utility assistance to eligible Bucks County tenants impacted by COVID-19. Both tenants and their landlords are encouraged to apply – either party can start the application. Landlords are able to apply and invite multiple tenants to participate in the program at one time. Landlords must submit a W-9 and if there are rental arrears, a ledger/statement documenting what is owed. Landlords, please utilize only one application to invite multiple tenants – do NOT fill out individual applications for each tenant. Please understand while landlords can apply – an application cannot be completed without tenant participation.
In order to be considered an eligible Bucks County tenant you must be in one of the following housing situations:
- Renting a unit
- Renting a manufactured (mobile) home and/or the parcel of land the manufactured home occupies
- Residing in a hotel/motel as your primary residence for the last 90 days
- Renting a residence in a “rent-to-own” agreement, under which the renter has the option (or obligation) to purchase the property at the end of the lease term
The BERA program cannot provide mortgage assistance.
Tenants will be asked for the following documentation to apply. If you do not have some or all of this documentation, you can still apply. Please contact the BERA helpline at 888-50-BUCKS for assistance:
- Identification for adult (18+) household members
- Past 30 days income (check stubs from the last 30 days, evidence of unemployment, social security payments, etc.) or completed 2020 Federal Tax Return
- Assets – bank statement from last 30 days
- Most recent rent statement, if available
- Utility bills, if requesting utility assistance
- Lease/Rental Agreement
- Late notice/eviction notice (if one has been given)
Further details, terms, and conditions are contained in the online application below. Please do not create multiple applications as it will slow the review process.
Begin the application by clicking the link below. Note: the County is utilizing Neighborly Software for the online portal so applicants will receive an e-mail from Neighborly confirming their registration.
Priority will be given to eligible applicants that have household incomes at or below 50% area median income (AMI) OR 1 or more individuals within the household are unemployed as of the date of the application for assistance and have not been employed for the 90-day period preceding such date.
The BERA Program is a collaborative effort of Bucks County and Bucks County Housing Link Partners.
ALERT: Please note that the CDC has ordered a temporary halt to evictions (for non-payment of rent only) if you meet certain criteria and declare it to your landlord. You can still have a judgement filed against you. Additionally, a Bucks Court Order has been issued that can delay ("continue") an eviction action filed against you for 30 days while your BERA application is processed IF you request a "continuance". This can give time for a BERA payment to be made before a judgment is filed.
Tenants at risk of eviction (e.g. late notice, can’t pay rent) can complete the following steps as appropriate:
- Read the Declaration Form to see if you qualify. If so, complete and submit the DECLARATION FORM and provide to your landlord. This prevents the landlord taking possession of the property until October 3rd, 2021. This date may change, check this website for updates.
Also, if you currently have a court-issued eviction notice with a docket number, consider the following:
- Submit the above Declaration Form to the Court where your eviction is filed AND
- Submit a “Request for Continuance Form” to the Court where your eviction was filed after applying to BERA. See the form for more instructions.
Note: You are responsible for your own representation and Court attendance regarding any eviction action filed against. Nothing in this alert shall be interpreted as creating an attorney-client or any other representative relationship between you and the BERA program.
Para ver este sitio web en español, seleccione "Español" en la esquina inferior derecha de esta página donde está escrito "Seleccionar idioma".
(Translation:) To see this website in Spanish, select “Spanish” in the lower right corner of this page where it is written “Select Language”.
Después de empujar el enlace web anterior para el programa BERA, traduzca la aplicación al español haciendo empujar este botón y eligiendo "Español"
(Translation: ) After clicking on the weblink above for the BERA program, translate the application into Spanish by clicking on this button and choosing “Spanish”