Emergency

Housing and Renter Support during COVID-19

To check the status of your application contact the nonprofit organizations assigned to your case. Please have your case number ready. Spanish-speaking assistance is available.

Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP)

Sonoma County as of February 11, 2022 will put a pause on accepting any new applications for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, which is funded by the State of California and the federal government. The pause is necessary to try to ensure that all of those with completed applications that are in the queue will receive the funds they requested.

Sonoma County has a high volume of backlog applications that we are diligently working through. You may submit your application to the waitlist. All waitlist applications will not be reviewed until April. Further assistance is subject to the availability of funding.

Applications submitted before the pause date will be reviewed and awarded as funding permits. As of October 1, 2021 renters who have submitted a complete application are protected from being evicted for non-payment of rental debt incurred between October 1, 2021, and March 30, 2022, until a decision has been made or the tenant has failed to complete their section.

Organization Webpage Phone Number Service Area
Petaluma People Services Center https://petalumapeople.org/housing/ (707) 7658488 Sonoma County
Reach For Home https://www.reachforhome.org/ (707) 4336161 Northern Sonoma County (Windsor-Cloverdale)
La Luz https://www.laluzcenter.org/ (707) 9385131 Sonoma Valley
Catholic Charities https://www.srcharities.org/contact (707) 528-8712 Sonoma County
West County Community Services / River to Coast Children’s Services https://www.westcountyservices.org/ (707) 837-3037
for Spanish call (707) 869-3613
West County
Community Action Partnership Sonoma County https://www.capsonoma.org/ (707) 5446911 Sonoma County
Child Parent Institute https://calparents.org/ (707) 341-2877 Sonoma County
Face to Face/ Sonoma County AIDS Network https://f2f.org/services/housing-services/ (707) 544-1581 Sonoma County (Patients or clients of Face2Face only)
Russian River Alliance https://www.russianriveralliance.org/ (707) 520-0032 Forestville to Cazadero including, Occidental.

 

Other Services

Renters

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.

CURA Project

The COVID-19 Urgent Response and Aid (CURA) Project is a hub connecting Latinx, Indigenous, and low-income community members to a wide range of community-based services.

  • If you tested positive for COVID-19 or you are quarantining due to possible exposure, you may be eligible for emergency financial assistance.
  • Resource navigation and case management is available for COVID-19 testing and education, tenant rights and legal aid, food aid and delivery, and mental health services.

Renters & Homeowners

  • COVID-19 Protections and Information
    • Legal Aid has prepared several resources designed to inform Sonoma County residents of the most up-to-date laws regarding renters and homeowner protections, rental support, and other COVID-19 laws. Please visit Legal Aid of Sonoma for the full list of resources.
  • 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.

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

Just Cause

On Feb. 9, 2021, the Board of Supervisors approved an amendment to the COVID-19 Eviction Defense Ordinance, requiring landlords to state a “Just Cause” reason to evict tenants in any eviction notice and prove that is the real reason for the eviction in court. The only allowable “Just Cause” reasons for eviction are:

  • The tenant poses an imminent threat to health or safety (like violence)
  • The landlord is removing the property from the rental market
  • Nonpayment of rent

This amendment creates a legal defense for tenants who live anywhere in Sonoma County and receive an eviction notice based on any other reason.

The COVID-19 Just Cause protections apply to all Sonoma County tenants, including those who are unable to pay rent and those who are able to pay rent. The COVID-19 Just Cause protections are in effect until the end of the local repayment period as modified by state law (currently June 30, 2022).

The ordinance automatically applies to both incorporated and unincorporated areas of Sonoma County, although cities may elect to establish their own ordinance.

Rent is not forgiven for tenants with a COVID-19 hardship, but resources are available. Tenants and landlords should apply for rental assistance. Tenants should apply even if they borrowed money to stay current on rent, they moved, their landlord or master tenant refuses to apply, or they have already received rental/utility assistance in the past.

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@petalumapeople.org

Ways to Help

For more information, see How you can help »