Housing and Renter Support during COVID-19

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Financial Assistance for Households


There are local resources for both renters and homeowners available in Sonoma County.

Paying Utility Bills

  • Salvation Army – 93 Stony Circle, Santa Rosa, (707) 542-0981
    • Help to pay water, electric and other utility bills.
    • Afternoons, Monday-Friday, by appointment only.

Renters & Homeowners

  • NEW Covid-19 Protections and Information
    • Legal Aid has prepared several resources designed to inform Sonoma County tenants and landlords about the new law.
      • New COVID-19 protections for tenants One-page flyer (PDF)
      • COVID-19-Related Financial Distress Declaration (PDF) copy
      • Tenants can send to their landlord a completed letter instructing them to apply any rent payments to the current month. Editable sample letter Monthly Rent Template Letter (PDF)
    • FAQ for Tenants (PDF)
    • FAQ for Landlords (PDF)
  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
      • Information for mortgage holders
  • Season of Sharing (SOS)Disaster assistance with housing costs and critical family needs applications accepted through June 30.
    • Supports low-to-moderate income families with dependent children, age 55 and older, disabled individuals, veterans, pregnant women in their 2nd or 3rd trimester, survivors of domestic violence and transitioning emancipated foster youth between 18 and 24.
    • During the pandemic, support is also available for those who have lost income due to the coronavirus.
  • Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County
    • Information about low-income rent and deposit assistance programs.
  • CARES Rental Assistance
  • Mortgage holders

For assistance with rent or utilities, see Financial & Housing Assistance »

COVID-19 Eviction Defense Ordinance

On March 24, 2020, the Board of Supervisors took action to approve the COVID-19 Eviction Defense Ordinance, effective immediately and for the duration of the declared Local Emergency in Sonoma County.

This ordinance creates a legal defense for tenants who live anywhere in Sonoma County and  are being evicted due to non-payment of rent and who can demonstrate financial losses due to lost work or medical expenses resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.

The ordinance requires that tenants who use this defense share that information with their landlord to support claims for any prospective mortgage relief.

The Ordinance will continue for 60 days after the end of the emergency. Rent is not forgiven for tenants with a hardship, but landlords must work with tenants on a rent repayment program that will allow tenants to stay housed during this emergency.

For tenant support and questions about how the eviction ordinance passed by the Board of Supervisors may apply to you, contact Legal Aid Sonoma County at (707) 542-1290 or California Rural Legal Assistance at (707) 528-9941 or watch the videos below, explaining Sonoma County’s Eviction Defense Ordinance:

  • Information for tenants regarding Sonoma County’s COVID-19 Eviction Defense Ordinance
  • Petaluma People Services Center has letter templates that can be sent to landlords if needed, in light of Eviction Defense Ordinance. Email fairhousing@petaulmapeople.org

Ways to Help

For more information, see How you can help »