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New rent support for Albertans between jobs

Provincial Press Release April 29, 2021 @ 1:34pm published at 2:35pm

Alberta’s government will launch a new Temporary Rent Assistance Benefit for eligible Albertans on May 1.

Under the redesigned Rent Supplement Program, the new temporary benefit provides a subsidy for working households with low income or those between jobs. Support is available for up to two years to help tenants afford their rent while they stabilize or improve their situation.

“Provincial housing programs have overlooked working households or those between jobs in the past, but thanks to our program redesign that is no longer the case. This new benefit will help make sure Alberta’s Rent Supplement Program meets the needs of Albertans during these difficult times.” Josephine Pon, Minister of Seniors and Housing

“This new funding stream fills a gap for Albertans who need temporary assistance with their rent while they get back on their feet. Providing innovative rental assistance benefit programs like this means that we can help Edmonton families stay in their homes, even during these difficult economic times.” Greg Dewling, CEO, Civida

“Lethbridge Housing Authority is pleased to administer the new Temporary Rent Assistance Benefit to Lethbridge residents who are experiencing short-term challenges in maintaining affordable housing. The innovative TRAB will address the gap in affordable housing by providing assistance to those who may have recently experienced job loss or those with a modest working income.” Robin James, CAO, Lethbridge Housing Authority

The Temporary Rent Assistance Benefit will be paid directly to tenants and is available in Alberta’s seven major centres, where rent is the highest and affordability the lowest. Household size and location will determine the benefit amount. Households may be eligible if they are below the local income thresholds and are currently employed or have been employed in the last 24 months and are not receiving social assistance.

The Rent Assistance Benefit, formerly the Direct to Tenant Rent Supplement, reopened on April 1. This long-term benefit provides stable support for Albertans with the lowest income across the province. Details on both benefits are available online.

Quick facts

  • Applicants interested in either benefit are encouraged to contact their local housing operator for details on how to apply.

  • Budget 2021 injects an additional $16 million into the Rent Supplement Program.

  • Following a review, Alberta’s government redesigned the Rent Supplement Program to provide more flexibility in housing choice and ensure critical housing support for more households.

  • The Affordable Housing Review Panel's report identified a clear need to redefine the government’s role, tap into community expertise, expand partnerships, reward innovation and simplify the system. Updates to the Rent Supplement Program address two of the panel’s recommendations.

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