During these uncertain times, we hope to help residents find stability in housing. Here you will find information specific to tenants. Our resources include language translation assistance, childcare, homelessness support services, assistance with landlord issues & eviction, and help finding rental units.
- Language translation assistance
Austin has grown into a global community, with people from several countries living and interacting with each other. Unfortunately, language barriers can be a problem for renters who could benefit from translation services. The City of Austin wants to serve these residents by offering language translation services to facilitate their daily lives.
City of Austin - Web Based Communication
The City of Austin’s website currently uses Google Translate, an automated language translation tool that accommodates numerous languages. As with any digital translation, the conversion is not always context-sensitive and may be not fully translate a text’s intended meaning. The Google Translate tool is located at the upper right page of the city’s webpages.
City of Austin - Conversational Interpreter Assistance
Those who need an interpreter to conduct conversation with city staff members can contact the City of Austin to arrange for interpretive services through the city’s Language Access Coordinator at 512-974-6745.
Affordable Austin-Area Translation Services
There are a handful of community organizations and businesses that provide affordable language interpreters and translations for a wide range of citizens who may have limited English proficiency. Below are a few of the local translation services available to individuals.
Austin Language Justice Collective seeks to bridge language barriers so that all people, regardless of what language they speak, have an efficient means of communication. Austin interpreters generally charge $40-$60 per hour for nonprofit interpreting, and up to $85 per hour for conference and business interpreting. In some circumstances, interpreters may accommodate low-cost or pro-bono assignments. For more information, visit the Austin Language Justice Collective (Web) or contact them via email at email@example.com.
- Resources for displaced families with children
Displacement is hard on families, but it especially hard on children. Studies suggest that 41 percent of school-aged homeless kids will attend two or more schools in less than a year, and 28 percent will attend three or more schools. As children are shuffled from shelter to shelter, school to school, access to tutoring, nutritious meals, and stable social relationships suffers. The City of Austin joins with local school districts to bring some level of hope and stability to these young lives.
Community Services for Children
Any Baby Can is an Austin-based nonprofit that strengthens families through a range of family support services, including parental counseling, resource navigation, and family support services. Visit Any Baby Can (Web) to see if you are eligible. You can also call 512-454-3743 or email Info@AnyBabyCan.org.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Service (TDFPS) Transition Centers provide a central clearinghouse of one-stop services to serve the diverse needs of at-risk youth. The Austin Center is managed by LifeWorks Youth Resource Center (Web). Drop-in inquiries are welcome at the Lifeworks Headquarters, at 835 N. Pleasant Valley Road, between Monday and Thursday from 10 am - 4 pm, but calling ahead is appreciated. Questions about services can be submitted via phone at 800-414-5457 or on the website.
Child Care and Pre-School Services
For child care services for working families, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (TDFPS) (Web) provides an online searchable database of both licensed child care centers or listed family homes (i.e., homes that are not licensed or registered by the TDFPS). You can also contact the Austin Child Care Licensing Officeat 14000 Summit Drive, Suite 100, Austin, Texas 78728 or call 512-834-3426
The City of Austin and Travis County partner for the Child Care Program, which works with Workforce Solutions Child Care Services (Web) and Texas Rising Star 4-Star providers to provide subsidized child care for eligible families. Families need only to find a facility with an opening on the child care provider list (web) and apply online at Workforce Solutions Child Care Services (Web) or by calling 512-597-7191. There may be a waiting list.
School-based Services and Programs
The Austin, Pflugerville, and Del Valle Independent School Districts provide assistance programs for students affected by housing displacement or homelessness.
Project HELP (Web) is a program of the Austin Independent School District (AISD) that serves displaced or homeless children under the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (i.e., students experiencing hardship due to a loss of housing and living in substandard housing, shelters, or transitional housing). The three primary goals of Project HELP include: 1) providing services to an increasing number of AISD students, 2) maintaining partnerships with community collaborators, and 3) ensuring service strategies are student-centered and aligned with students being academically successful.
Visit Project HELP (Web) for more information, or contact AISD’s Department of School, Family & Community Education at 512-414-3690. For those needing translation services, AISD can facilitate discussion through its Language Line Translation Service (Web) which provides over-the-phone conferencing and language interpretation in more than 200 languages at all campuses. For more information on language translation or interpretation services, visit AISD Office of Community Services (Web) or call 512-414-9882.
Del Valle Independent School District
Homeless services for students in Del Valle Independent School District (DVISD) are managed by the Office of Homeless Liaison, which can be contacted through Homeless Liason (Web) or by phone at 512-386-3110.
Pflugerville Independent School District
The Pflugerville Independent School District also a Project Hope program through its Social Work Office (Web). Families who qualify to receive services through the McKinney-Vento Act should email the district’s Homeless Liaison or call 512-594-1953 or email the Project HOPE Social worker or call 512-594-1960 to begin the qualification process.
Texas Homeless Education Office, University of Texas at Austin
The Texas Homeless Education Office (Web) is committed to ensuring that all Texas children in homeless or displacement situations have the opportunity to enroll in, attend, and succeed in school. In its efforts to accomplish this goal, the office provides a variety of services to school districts, education service centers, students, parents, caregivers, service providers, shelters, state agencies, advocates, higher education institutions, and other interested parties.
For more information about displaced student and parental rights and responsibilities in the state, visit the Texas Homeless Education Office (Web) or call 1-800-446-3142
- Transitional homelessness housing
For immediate housing needs, the City of Austin’s Public Health Department’ Self-Sufficiency and Responsibility Initiative provides collaborative services to help homeless men and families get back on their feet, with a focus on self-sufficiency and responsibility.
The Austin Resource Center for the Homeless (Web) is a men’s shelter and resource center for up to 100 men to meet basic needs, including healthcare, showers, laundry facilities, phone and messaging centers, lockers, and food. It also has several co-located agencies providing case management, job placement services, and legal assistance.
The Austin Women and Children's Center (Web) is operated by the Salvation Army. The Shelter for Women and Children provides emergency shelter to single adult women and to women and their dependents. Services include case management, job training, and GED and ESL classes.
Austin’s Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HPRP) (Web) manages federal funding for financial assistance and services to prevent individuals and families from becoming homeless and to help those who are experiencing homelessness to be quickly re-housed and stabilized. Managed by the Austin Public Health Department, the program provides grant funds to Youth and Family Alliance (aka LifeWorks) and CARITAS of Austin. Information for both programs is included below:
The Youth and Family Alliance (aka LifeWorks) (Web) provides Rapid Housing and Supportive Housing Programs that provide on-site case management and apartment-based transitional living to homeless youth and young families. Participants are provided with comprehensive case management, independent living skills, and parenting classes, as well as linkages to resources such as childcare, counseling, and medical services.
Caritas of Austin (Web) conducts community outreach and intake for HPRP, and serves as liaisons to area school districts, faith communities, and homeless service providers. Caritas also manages the City-funded Rapid Re-Housing Pilot Project which serves as the liaison between local landlords and the HPRP clients and conduct the required housing inspections.
Most all charitable organizations in Austin use a Coordinated Assessment Application (Web) to serve people experiencing homelessness. The application is a 50-question survey that helps community service providers align the needs of those who are displaced with that most appropriate support services. Managed by a collaboration of Ending Community Homelessness Coalition (ECHO) (Web), Front Steps (Web), and the Salvation Army, the Coordinated Assessment Application lets individuals complete only ONE application for services that is accepted by dozens of support services and resources in the city.
Our housing partners include:
- Foundation Communities (Web)
- Green Doors (Web)
- CARITAS Austin (Web)
- Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Austin (Web)
Individuals can complete the Coordinated Assessment over the phone by calling ECHO at 512-234-3630 Monday through Friday from 9 am to 4 pm, or by visiting a location below to fill out the assessment in person.
Organization: Front Steps (Web)
Hours of Operation:
Monday-Friday (except Tuesday): 9AM- 4PM
Tues: 9AM- 12PM
Organization: Salvation Army (Web)
Address: 501 E. 8th St, Austin, Texas 78701
Hours of Operation:
Monday-Friday (except Tuesday): 9 am -4 pm
Tuesday: 9AM-11AM & 2PM-4PM
- Get help with a landlord issue
Are you a renter being evicted and need legal help?
The City of Austin has partnered with Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid (TRLA) (Web), a non-profit organization, to provide emergency eviction counseling, representation, and prevention services for low-income renters. To learn more about the organization and the wide range of services that they provide to homeowners and renters, please visit their website.
Know your rights as a renter
Building and Strengthening Tenant Action (BASTA) (Web) helps Austin renters work together to ensure that access to safe and affordable housing by developing tenant associations, organizing tenants for facility upkeep repairs, and providing legal assistance through strategic guidance and legal counsel. The Austin Tenants Council (Web) provides a Renters’ Rights Assistance Program (RRAP) for counseling and technical assistance to low-income renters on tenant-landlord issues, mediates disputes, provides workshops, and identifies fair housing issues to resolve or minimize discriminatory housing practices. For more information on the RRAP Program, call (512) 474-1961.
In addition to eviction prevention counsel, Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid (TRLA) (Web) provides other free legal services to low-income residents for renter-landlord disputes, home foreclosures, fair housing, and federally subsidized housing.
Texas Attorney General Tenant Rights (Web) lists your rights as a tenant and lets you file a complaint with the Texas Attorney General’s Office.
Texas A&M University Real Estate Center provides a “plain English” Landlord and Tenants Guide (Web) for renters.
Building and Strengthening Tenant Action (BASTA) (Web) helps Austin renters work together to ensure that access to safe and affordable housing by developing tenant associations, organizing tenants for facility upkeep repairs, and providing legal assistance through strategic guidance and legal counsel.
- Information for tenants facing eviction
Legal Help for Tenants Facing Eviction
The City of Austin has partnered with Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid (TRLA) (Web) to provide emergency eviction counseling, representation, and prevention services for low-income renters.
To learn more about the organization and the wide range of services that they provide to homeowners and renters, please visit TRLA (Web).
City Initiatives for Eviction Prevention
Eviction prevention and homeless programs support low-income tenants (renters) with legal assistance, emergency grants for rent or utilities, alternate housing, short-term motel vouchers, or placement in a local shelter.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Steve Adler issuedOrder No. 20211015-035 (PDF) that prohibits landlords from issuing notices to vacate except in certain circumstances. This order expires on December 31, 2021.
Travis County has numerous online resources numerous online resources (Web) for tenants facing eviction, as do the county’s Justice of the Peace Precinct Offices. The Travis County Sheriff’s Office provides a concise brochure for Evictions and Lease Terminations (Web). A more extensive description of tenant rights in Travis County can be found through the Travis County Law Library and Self-Help Center (Web). While not a substitute for consulting an attorney, the site provides easy-to-understand kits for appealing an eviction, filing appeal bonds, and the record expungement process.
Austin Tenant's Council (Web) offers counseling to prepare for and understand the eviction process, including reviewing the notices a tenants has received and assisting tenants with preparing for court if necessary.
Tenant Relocation Assistance
The City of Austin has passed a Tenant Relocation Assistance (Web) ordinance to ensure landlords have provided appropriate and timely information to tenants in the event of the demolition of a multifamily building of five or more units, rezoning, or the redevelopment of a mobile home park. For more information about the ordinance and the notification requirements, visit Tenant Relocation Assistance Policy (Web).
In particular, tenants who have been notified of displacement should promptly:
- Check the lease to see what is required for move-out—especially to see if you must give advance notice of a move-out date
- Begin looking for new housing to move into before the end of the notice period, or the end of the lease (whichever comes first)
- Make sure you possess the required documents to apply for new housing (ID, proof of income, etc.)
- Make sure you are up to date on your rent and fees so that the security deposit can be returned
- Once a new home is found, provide your old landlord with a forwarding address to facilitate the return of the security deposit
- Contact Austin Energy (Web) at 512-494-9400 for information on connection fees and deposits at your new home.
- Información para inquilinos que se enfrentan al desalojo
Los programas para prevención del desalojo y desamparo apoyan a los inquilinos con bajos ingresos mediante asistencia legal, subsidios de emergencia para alquiler o servicios públicos, vivienda alternativa, cupones para moteles a corto plazo o estadía en un albergue de la localidad.
En respuesta a la pandemia del COVID-19, el Alcalde Steve Adler emitió la Orden Nro. 20211015-035 (PDF) que les prohibía a los propietarios entregar avisos de desalojo salvo en determinadas circunstancias. Esta orden caduca el 31 de deciembre de 2021.
A partir del 1 de septiembre de 2021, un propietario puede entregar un aviso de desalojo si el inquilino adeuda tres o más meses de alquiler y se reúnen otras determinadas condiciones.
Si usted es propietario y desea entregar un aviso de desalojo a un inquilino que debe tres (3) o más meses de pagos de alquiler, complete y envíe la Solicitud Para Prevencion del Desalojo (Web) que servirá como la documentación requerida por la orden del alcalde. Además, un propietario debe completar la Verificación de cumplimiento que se adjunta a la Orden del Alcalde.
El Condado de Travis tiene muchos recursos por internet (Web) para los inquilinos que enfrentan el desalojo, al igual que las Oficinas del precinto del juzgado de paz del condado. La Oficina del Sheriff del Condado de Travis provee un cuadernillo conciso sobre Desalojos y rescisiones de alquileres (Web). Puede consultar una descripción más detallada de los derechos de los inquilinos en el Condado de Travis a través de la Bibilioteca de Derecho y Centro de autogestión del Condado de Travis (Web). A pesar de que no reemplaza la consulta con un abogado, el sitio provee kits de fácil comprensión para apelar un desalojo, cómo presentar fianzas de apelación y el proceso de eliminación de expedientes.
El Consejo para inquilinos de Austin (Web) ofrece asesoría para prepararse para el proceso de desalojo y entenderlo, incluso una revisión de los avisos que un inquilino recibió y ayuda a los inquilinos con la preparación judicial, si fuese necesario.
La Ciudad de Austin aprobó una ordenanza de Asistencia para reubicación de inquilinos (Web) para asegurarse de que los propietarios hayan entregado información adecuada y oportuna a los inquilinos en caso de la demolición de un edificio multifamiliar de cinco unidades o más, nueva zonificación o nueva urbanización de un parque de viviendas ambulantes. Para obtener más información sobre la ordenanza y el requisito de notificación, visite el sitio web de la política de Asistencia para reubicación de inquilinos.
Sobre todo, los inquilinos que hayan recibido aviso de desplazamiento deberían de inmediato:
- Checar el contrato de alquiler para ver qué se requiere para mudarse, sobre todo para ver si usted (el inquilino) debe entregar un preaviso de una fecha de mudanza
- Empezar a buscar una nueva vivienda para mudarse antes de lo que ocurra primero entre el final del periodo de notificación o el final del contrato de alquiler
- Asegurarse de poseer los documentos requeridos para solicitar una nueva vivienda (identificación, constancia de ingresos, etc.)
- Asegurarse de estar al día con el pago de su alquiler y tarifas para que le puedan regresar el depósito de garantía
- Después de encontrar una nueva casa, entréguele a su arrendador anterior una dirección de envío para facilitar la devolución del depósito de garantía
- Contacte a Austin Energy a través del 512-494-9400 o por internet en Austin Energy (Web) para obtener información respecto de tarifas de conexión y depósitos en su nueva casa.
- Resources for individuals looking for rental housing
If you are looking for an affordable apartment in Austin, the following sites may help:
City of Austin Affordable Housing Listing (Web) is a comprehensive database that includes affordable, income-restricted housing units in Austin that were either funded by the City of Austin or created through development incentives or agreements with the City.
The database does not provide real-time vacancy information, but you can look through the listings to see which developments may have affordable units and contact the property managers directly to find out about availability and whether you are income-eligible.
Go Section8 (Web) is a free, searchable, and online affordable rental listing service available to households with or without a Housing Choice (Section 8) Voucher (Web), which allows eligible households to use a voucher to help pay for their housing.
Austin 2-1-1 (Web) is a free, anonymous, social service hotline available 24 hours a day by phone or online atwww.211texas.org/. No matter where you live in Texas, you can dial 2-1-1, or (877) 541-7905, and find information about local resources for food or housing, child care, crisis counseling, or substance abuse treatment.
Texas Housing Counselor (Web) (under revision)This site is another web-based searchable application that identifies potential affordable housing opportunities in any city in Texas based on your needs. It is maintained by Texas Housers (Web), an organization to support low-income Texans to achieve decent, affordable, housing in quality neighborhoods.
Housing Authority of the City of Austin (HACA) (Web) administers a Housing Choice Voucher list, as well as 18 other opportunities for Project-Based Rental Assistance programs, Low-Income Housing Tax Credit housing units, and several public housing properties. For more information about HACA-supported housing properties, visit Housing Authority of the City of Austin (Web) or call 512-477-4488.
The Tenant Based Rental Assistance (TBRA) program assists low-income families to move from homelessness to self-sufficiency by providing rental subsidies and case management support services. The program serves families with incomes at, or below, 50% of the Median Family Income. For more information on the TBRA program, contact the Housing Authority of the City of Austin (Web) at 512-477-1314.
Guide to Affordable Housing in the Greater Austin Area (Web) is an annual publication, maintained by the Austin Tenant's Council isavailable online, and in printable formats, to assist persons searching for reasonably priced rental housing in the Austin area.
Aunt Bertha (Web) is a free, anonymous website that matches people with social service programs they may qualify for, including services that provide food, housing, transit, health/medical, education, and legal help. Once you have identified programs that might fit your needs through the website, be sure to contact the programs directly to find out if you qualify.
Housing Income and Rent Limits (Web) makes rental housing available through City of Austin funding or incentives are generally targeted to households earning less than 50% of the Median Family Income (MFI) for the Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area. Each year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) releases an updated Annual MFI Chart (Web) showing the MFI for different household sizes. The City of Austin relies upon this annual update to establish the income limits permitted for all RHDA assisted properties.
Haven Connect (Web) allows low-income applicants to apply online to open affordable housing waitlists directly. Applicants are notified every year to update their information across all Haven Connect applications and are also notified when they are at the top of the waitlist.
- Financial assistance for rent & utilities
The Relief of Emergency Needs for Tenants (RENT) Assistance Program provides up to 18 months of full rent payment for income-eligible Austin renters who experienced a COVID-19-related income loss. Learn more at RENT
NEED RENT HELP?
Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (TBRA) Program (Web) assists low-income families to move from homelessness to self-sufficiency by providing rental subsidies and case management support services. At this time, the Housing Authority of the City of Austin (HACA) is only accepting individuals that qualify through the Coordinated Assessment administered by the Ending Community Homelessness Coalition (ECHO), a centralized process designed to coordinate program participant intake, assessment, and provision of referrals. For more information on the TBRA program, visit theHACA website or call at (512) 477-1314.
Travis County Family Support Services Division provides rental assistance, but limits that assistance to once every 12 months and requires the applicant to register for workforce development, education, or job training services. For more information, visit Travis County Family Support Services (Web).
Advocacy Outreach administers state grant funding to help the homeless pay for moving expenses or security deposits. Other financial aid, loans, or grants may be issued for rent or energy bills. For more information visit any of the organizations listed below:
- Catholic Charities of Central Texas (Web) (512) 651-6100
Catholic Charities Financial Stability Program helps families prevent homelessness and achieve financial security through case management, education and emergency financial assistance. Please contact Catholic Charities Financial Stability Program at 512-651-6100 with questions and to schedule an appointment.
- St. Matthew's Episcopal Church (Web) (512) 345-8314
- St. Vincent de Paul, St. Austin's Catholic Church (Web) (512) 477-9471
- Austin Resource Center for the Homeless, Inc. (Arch) (Web) (512) 305-4100
- Travis County Family Support Services Division (Web) (512) 267-3245
- Texas Health and Human Services Department (HHSD) (Web) Dial 2-1-1 or (877)-541-7905
Displaced families and individuals may be eligible for utility Customer Assistance Program Discounts that include waivers from electric and water customer charges, and discounts on electrical and water volume usage charges. To inquire about eligibility, visit Austin Utility CAP (Web) or call the Customer Care Call Center at 512-494-9400.
In addition, City of Austin Utilities provides assistance to customers who are having financial difficulties and are unable to pay their utility bill due to unexpected emergencies. The Financial Support Plus 1 Program (Web) partners with local churches and nonprofits to screen applicants, determine eligibility, and arrange for funding to be applied to the customer’s utility account. For more information about qualifying and through which community service agency you are eligible, go to Financial Support Plus 1 (Web), or call Customer Care at 512-494-9400.
More housing resources, eviction information, help with paying utilities and related housing services are available on Housing Resources (Web).
NEED HELP PAYING YOUR UTILITIES?
Residential customers experiencing financial hardships as well as those impacted by COVID-19 can receive Utility Bill Relief (Web).