$25 million in rent and mortgage assistance to be won in SC

The SC Stay program opened applications Thursday, helping provide relief to hundreds of thousands of people facing evictions in Palmetto State.

COLUMBIA, SC — $25 million in rent and mortgage assistance is up for grabs in South Carolina through the SC Stay program.

The program SC stay opened applications on Thursday, helping relieve hundreds of thousands of people facing eviction in Palmetto State.

“A lot of people maybe really struggled in the summer, maybe the fall. Maybe their finances rebounded, maybe they’re able to make their monthly payments now, but they still have those past payments hanging over their heads,” said Chris Winston, spokesperson for SC housing.

SC Stay is a program under SC Housing.

It has $25 million in funding under the CARES Act ready to pay homeowners or mortgage holders.

RELATED: New Housing Assistance Program Launches Feb. 1

“It’s up to six months’ salary or $7,500 and it goes back to last February,” Winston said.

To get help, you must first apply by visiting SCStay.org.

To be eligible, you must:

  • Made at or below 80% of county median income
  • Ask a landlord or lender to confirm overdue status while accepting payments on your behalf
  • Prove that you are unable to pay to live in your accommodation for pandemic-related reasons

RELATED: $25M in Rent, Mortgage Help on the Way for SC Families

“When the pandemic hit I was made redundant from my job and fell behind on a lot of my bills,” a Midlands resident told News 19 in a phone interview.

The resident, who wished to remain anonymous, says he lost his telecommunications job in November.

“Everyone I’ve spoken to is running out of funds,” he explained.

Even with unemployment money, he says he can’t get his head above water.

“You still had $300 on it, it’s like putting a band-aid on your neck after you cut off your head,” he said.

He hopes SC Stay can be his family’s saving grace to help them stay in their home.

“My landlord told me about different programs and I applied to all of them. I applied to SC Stay hoping to get some help to keep me from being homeless,” did he declare. “It’s a volatile situation, but we are South Carolina. South Carolina, we’re doing our best to survive.”

RELATED: President Biden signs executive order to extend eviction moratorium

SC Housing expects the funding to be distributed within the next 30 days.

“Get it dropped as soon as possible, because we know there’s a lot of need out there,” Winston said. “We know there are a lot of people who are hurting. We expect these funds to be depleted at some point very quickly due to the needs that exist.”

The National Council of State Housing Authorities predicts that up to 180,000 tenants in South Carolina will be evicted when the moratorium is lifted on March 31.

Tenants and landlords looking for help avoiding eviction or foreclosure can find helpful resources at SC Housing website.