COVID-19

Interest in rent banks has increased significantly, as many British Columbians experience housing instability due to the economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis. In this section, we’ve provided information on services and supports that may be available to renters during this difficult time.

End of Rent Eviction Ban

Information for renters, landlords and communities

A rent bank provides financial assistance in the form of a repayable loan, to households at risk of eviction for reasons such as non-payment of rent or utilities. Rent banks can also aid individuals by providing a damage deposit to make the move if finding a more sustainable housing option is needed.

One of the key criteria for qualifying for a rent bank loan is that the applicant can demonstrate their capacity to repay the loan. BC’s rent banks are not able to provide grants to help tenants pay for their housing.

Some tenants may be challenged to pay their full rent on September 1, 2020. If you have the means to pay a loan back in coming months, your local rent bank (if available in your region) would be happy to speak with you about how they can help.

If you are an existing rent bank client, BC’s rent banks will continue to work with you. If you have fallen further behind in paying rent during the pandemic, your initial rent bank loan may no longer be serving you as a means of maintaining your housing stability. Please reach out to your local rent bank representative, and they’ll work with you on an action plan moving forward.

If you have not yet established a repayment plan with your landlord for your unpaid rent or utilities in the pandemic, we encourage you to work with your landlord on that repayment plan.

If you do not qualify for a rent bank loan, please visit the BC Housing’s website for more information on rental assistance options that may be available to you.

For more information on whether you qualify for a rent bank loan, please contact your local rent bank.

Reaching Home Grant

Recognizing the impact of COVID-19 on people’s housing stability, BC Rent Bank and five of our rent bank partners have come together to offer housing support and homelessness prevention services. To that end, you may qualify for a Reaching Home grant, which are available to applicants until September 30, 2020.

To find out more information about these grants and whether or not you qualify, please contact one of the five rent bank partners:

Please note that you must be a resident of one of these communities to apply.

This project is funded by the Government of Canada’s Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy.