SC Housing will soon launch SC Stay Plus, a $272 million federally funded program to assist South Carolina residents in need of rental and utility assistance whose finances have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The application portal for SC Stay Plus will open in early May at SCHousing.com. Those who qualify for SC Stay Plus may receive up to 12 months of assistance for rent and utility payments dating back to March 2020. Applicants may also qualify for up to 3 months of future rent assistance.
Assistance is available for households in which one or more individuals meet all the following criteria:
- Has qualified for unemployment or experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced a financial hardship directly or indirectly due to COVID-19 (i.e., since March 2020);
- Can demonstrate a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability; and
- Has a household income at or below 80% of county median income.
Based upon federal and state requirements, priority will be given to households with an income at or below 50% of the median income, those with an individual who has been unemployed for more than 90 days, or those that are already in the eviction process. Household income will be determined by using the household’s 2020 annual income or current monthly income at the time of application.
South Carolina residents in 39 counties are eligible to participate in SC Stay Plus. The following seven counties were directly funded by the U.S. Treasury and will operate their own assistance programs, so residents of these seven counties should apply to their county program at this time: Anderson, Berkeley, Charleston, Greenville, Horry, Richland and Spartanburg.
“Even as our state continues its recovery efforts, the economic hardships of the pandemic have placed many families in jeopardy of losing their homes. It is our hope that SC Stay Plus will help them to get back on track,” said Bonita Shropshire, executive director of SC Housing.
Funding for the program is made available by the U.S. Department of the Treasury as part of a $25 billion rental and utility assistance package in the Consolidated Appropriations Act that Congress passed in December 2020. South Carolina lawmakers passed and Gov. McMaster signed a joint resolution (R.26/ H.3770) in April to outline how the funds should be distributed in the Palmetto State.
Additional information about the program and eligibility requirements is available at SCHousing.com. The community can also sign up for notifications about the program’s opening on this website.
About SC Housing
SC Housing is a self-sustaining housing finance agency committed to ensuring that South Carolinians have the opportunity to live in safe, decent and affordable housing. Agency operations are supported by a funding base that includes fees and other revenue earned through the administration of agency programs. For more information, visit SCHousing.com.