Does welfare help you get a car or help with housing?
There are several programs around the country that give Americans a helping hand to keep a roof over your head or make sure you have a car to get to work.
When life hits a rough patch, it can be daunting trying to figure out where to get help. There exist programs run by the government and non-profit organizations that can help from paying the bills to making sure you have a car so you can get to work.
The programs are targeted towards people with low incomes, veterans, the elderly and disabled as well as a few other groups.
The Wheels to Work program
Low wage working families that need a car in order to maintain their employment may be able to take advantage of programs that go by the name Wheels to Work or Work-N-Wheels among others. Around the nation there are several non-profit organizations that through donations and funding from the Federal Transit Administration can provide a low- or zero-interest loan, facilitate matching savings for a car down payment and purchase or even distribute cars directly to families.
Additionally some programs help with car repair and in some cases even paying fines. These efforts empower those families, increase job security and promote economic wellbeing and job security.
However, these programs are not widely available and candidates must meet various criteria and conditions in order to qualify. Generally, they can only provide for a small number of applicants, targeting low-income families in rural worker communities, but may also include physically disabled and veterans. You can call 211 to see if there is a program in your community or check a list provided by Working Cars for Working People.
Getting help with housing
Many people were put into financial straits during the covid-19 pandemic when it threw a monkey wrench in the global economy. The US government put a moratorium on evictions but that has now ended. In the last week of January there were over 9,000 eviction notices filed according to Eviction Lab datain the 6 states and 31 cities that they track.
The covid-19 relief bill passed in December 2020 established an Emergency Rental Assistance fund that was topped up in March 2021. Renters and landlords can apply for funds if tenants have experienced economic hardship due to the pandemic.
Additionally, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) helps low-income families, struggling seniors, people with disabilities and veterans find affordable rental housing. The agency has subsidized housing, public housing, and housing choice voucher programs.
Assistance paying the bills
The government also offers help with paying some bills related to housing. The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) can help those eligible pay heating or cooling bills in addition to making low-cost weatherization home improvements. So that households can stay connected, the Landline program managed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) assists low-income Americans get discounted landline, cell phone service with some even qualifying for a free phone.