- State Data Overview
Across Texas, there is a shortage of rental homes affordable and available to extremely low income households (ELI), whose incomes are at or below the poverty guideline or 30% of their area median income (AMI). Many of these households are severely cost burdened, spending more than half of their income on housing. Severely cost burdened poor households are more likely than other renters to sacrifice other necessities like healthy food and healthcare to pay the rent, and to experience unstable housing situations like evictions.KeyFacts866,765Or23%Renter households that are extremely low income$25,100Maximum income for 4-person extremely low income household (state level)-611,181Shortage of rental homes affordable and available for extremely low income renters$43,478Annual household income needed to afford a two-bedroom rental home at HUD's Fair Market Rent.73%Percent of extremely low income renter households with severe cost burden
- State Level PartnersState Partners
Texas Association of CDCs
1910 East Martin Luther King Boulevard
Austin, TX 78702
Matt Hull, Executive Director
Texas Homeless Network
1713 Fortview Road
Austin, TX 78704
Eric Samuels, President & CEO
Become an NLIHC State Partner
NLIHC’s affiliation with our state coalition partners is central to our advocacy efforts. Although our partners' involvement varies, they are all housing and homeless advocacy organizations engaged at the state and federal level. Many are traditional coalitions with a range of members; others are local organizations that serve more informally as NLIHC's point of contact.
Inquire about becoming a state partner by contacting [email protected]
- Housing Trust FundHTF Implementation Information
NLIHC continues working with leaders in each state and the District of Columbia who will mobilize advocates in support of HTF allocation plans that benefit ELI renters to the greatest extent possible. Please contact the point person coordinating with NLIHC in your state (below) to find out about the public participation process and how you can be involved. Email Brook Schipporeit with any questions.Current Year HTF Allocation
$10,956,435HTF State Resources
Log of Applicants (PDF)
2016Official Directly Involved with HTF Implementation:11 MB
State Housing Profile
Congressional District Housing Profile
Research and Data
National Housing Preservation Database
The National Housing Preservation Database is an address-level inventory of federally assisted rental housing in the United States.
Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing
The Gap: A Shortage of Affordable Rental Homes
- Take Action
- COVID-19 ResourcesCOVID-19 Resources
Many cities and states are establishing rental assistance programs to support individuals and families impacted by COVID-19. This tracker links to news reports of various city, state and philanthropic rental assistance programs that are being established during the pandemic. Check NLIHC's cumulative list of rental assistance.
Governor Greg Abbott announced Friday that $11.3 million in rental assistance will be easier to access for Texans in need during the COVID-19 crisis. https://tinyurl.com/y8bnwz6r
Updated on July 24, 2020.
CIty Description Source Austin The Travis County Commissioners Court unanimously approved the allocation of $10 million for direct rent, mortgage and utility assistance. The rental assistance will be available to Travis County residents. This one-time cash assistance was complemented by a $2.4 million budget transfer to the county’s emergency assistance program to make up for the pre-Covid funding shortfall. The budget transfer will be an ongoing source of financial assistance for county residents seeking help with rent or mortgage payments and represents a 355 percent increase in funding. However, the county will need to use the $10 million of rental assistance funds taken from its $61 million Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act allocation by December. https://tinyurl.com/ycsgk3c5 Austin The City of Austin Neighborhood Housing and Community Development Department announced Friday that they are providing $1.2 million in emergency rental assistance to Austinites affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. https://tinyurl.com/yarn9un6 Austin The Austin Tenant Stabilization Program will administer up to $3,000 per year in rental assistance as well as eviction prevention support and tenant relocation services to low-income households through selected nonprofit organizations. Participating organizations will be in charge of marketing the program, approving applicants and administering funds. The program will serve households earning up to 60 percent of the median family income, or $56,760 for a four-person household. https://tinyurl.com/yd4hnvy4 Bexar County Bexar County leaders, trying to plot a path forward through the COVID-19 pandemic, launched a $4 million rental assistance program. The fund will provide up to three months of assistance for people affected by furloughs, layoffs or other income losses resulting from the pandemic. It will be overseen by the Housing Authority of Bexar County. https://tinyurl.com/y7s4sj6y Dallas The Dallas City Council is considering a mortgage and rental assistance program that would provide around $13.7 million for rental assistance. https://tinyurl.com/y7prt2nc Denton The United Way of Denton County has created a referral partnership with the city of Denton to help people who have been financially impacted by COVID-19 get access with rent assistance, food and other community needs. The expanded program will be funded by a $50,000 contribution from the city. https://tinyurl.com/yd7ohkpj Fort Worth The city of Fort Worth is preparing to distribute about $15.4 million in federal funding to a few thousand families struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic.The money will help pay rent and utilities. https://tinyurl.com/y7vvkjtn Houston The Houston City Council has approved a $15 million rent relief program that will use millions in federal COVID-19 relief money to help Houstonians pay their rent. The program will be funded though federal CARES Act funding for the rent relief program. https://tinyurl.com/yb8mgwrc Killeen The City of Killeen dedicated CARES Act funding to assist residents with utility bills and rent who have experienced job loss, reduction in hours of employment, inability to work because of quarantine or a related situation resulting from the pandemic. Lubbock The Salvation is providing rent and utility assistance to those impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Clients meeting the eligibility criteria for rent assistance will be assisted with an amount up to $750.00. Clients meeting the eligibility requirements for utility assistance will be assisted with an amount up to $250.00. This effort is funded through a $75,000 grants from the Community Foundation of West Texas and the Lubbock Area United Way. https://tinyurl.com/y9zerybd San Antonio A new emergency assistance plan could makes lives easier for people who can't pay their rent. Tenants who have lost their jobs or been laid off due to COVID-19 are eligible for the innovative program. https://tinyurl.com/ycakzfc6 Fort Bend Fort Bend County approved $19.5 million of funding to assist renters and landlords in paying rent, mortgage, and utilities during the Coronavirus pandemic. Funding for the County’s rental assistance program comes through the Federal CARES Act. The funding will be implemented in 3 phases of $6,500,000 each. https://tinyurl.com/ybmvbeqd Waco Rental assistance is available to residents of Waco who have been affected by COVID-19. https://tinyurl.com/yb8s8o2f Montgomery County Montgomery County announced on Wednesday an additional $10 million towards rent relief for its residents. https://tinyurl.com/ybl7hmoq Denison Denison is dedicating $150,000 to assist residents financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The city announced last week that it will partner with community non-profits for a new residential assistance program aimed at providing monetary relief during the pandemic. https://tinyurl.com/y6kswm5v Edinburg The Community Development Block Grant-Coronavirus (CDBG-CV) Emergency Rental Assistance Program (CDBG-CV ERAP) has been developed to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus (COVID-19). This program will provide up to three (3) months of emergency rental assistance for qualifying families living inside the city limits and will only be granted one time per household. https://tinyurl.com/y6ae5634 Harlingen The Harlingen City Commission today approved the creation of a Hardship Assistance Program that will help residents that find themselves in a financial bind due to the Coronavirus. The program was unanimously approved during a Special Meeting of the Harlingen City Commission held earlier today and earmarks $225,000 to help Harlingen residents who have overdue utility, rent, or mortgage bills. https://tinyurl.com/y4jxpvan Hildago Hidalgo County launched a program that will provide mortgage and rent assistance to qualifying residents. The Mortgage and Rent Relief Program will provide assistance for rural county residents affected by COVID-19 for up to two months, according to a news release issued by the county on Monday. https://tinyurl.com/yy5w3rcw The Colony The Colony City Council on Tuesday approved a budget amendment that is designed to provide assistance to its residents impacted financially by the COVID-19 pandemic. Joe Perez, director of community relations and programming, said $15,000 will go to the Next Steps nonprofit organization to help residents with rent and utility payments. https://tinyurl.com/y3fojn6m
Across the country, homeless service providers are struggling to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to follow public health guidelines and help ensure people’s safety, some shelters are being forced to reduce services, restrict admittance, or close entirely. The loss of these critical resources puts people experiencing homelessness at even higher risk of illness. Check NLIHC's cumulative list of shelter closings.
Below is a list of shelters that have had to majorly alter services or completely close:
Haven for Hope in San Antonio stopped accepting new clients but continues to provide shelter to about 1,700 people.
Due to city regulations and safety regulations, Corazon Ministries and other organizations have changed and reduced services at some locations.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Houston is expected to suffer significantly more evictions than most major cities. This is because Houston has stopped providing protections at the local level after Texas’ eviction moratorium expired in May. Tenant advocates and housing attorneys expect evictions could soon surpass historical averages. The rise in evictions coincides with surging coronavirus cases.
The Texas Tribune examined how lack of access to federal assistance and fear of the legal system have prompted many undocumented immigrations to self-evict. While undocumented tenants have the same rights as anyone else during the eviction process, housing attorneys and immigration advocates say that they are often hesitant to exercise these rights.
The Texas Homeless Network is urging Congress to intervene to prevent low-income renters from being evicted and forced into homelessness. Without emergency rental assistance and an extended and expanded eviction moratorium, the number of people experiencing homelessness in Texas will rise to an estimated 40,000.
The Houston Chronicle highlighted the story of a Houston family that was recently evicted alongside several of their neighbors in the apartment complex.
Updated on July 28, 2020.
Evictions in Harris County continue to rise, with 2,300 eviction cases filed in Harris County just in the past month. Tenants facing eviction in the county have fewer protections than tenants in other cities across the country.
Updated on July 20, 2020.
Megan Kimble, a senior editor of the Texas Observer, joined CBS News to discuss how landlords are filing hundreds of evictions in violation of the CARES Act.
While there is significant concern about a rise in homelessness due to COVID-19, Reform Austin examines how organizations and service providers across Texas have worked to protect people experiencing homelessness amid the pandemic. “I think our homeless crisis response systems have done an amazing job of responding,” said Eric Samuels, CEO of the Texas Homeless Network, an NLIHC state partner.
Harris County and the city of Houston launched on June 30 a $56 million initiative to address homelessness. The Community-wide COVID-19 Housing Program (CCHP) aims to find permanent housing for 5,000 people experiencing homelessness over the next two years to limit the spread of the virus. Houston dedicated $29 million and Harris County allocated $18 million to the initiative using federal funding allocated through the CARES Act. Learn more about the CCHP.
Texas Housers, an NLIHC state partner, released a report that found that Texas rent relief programs are failing to target low-income residents, the population most susceptible to evictions and homelessness.
The Texas Tribune reports that legal groups are expanding their services and establishing special hotlines to assist tenants who are beginning to receive eviction notices. Texas’ legal system is landlord-friendly, meaning that tenants impacted by COVID-19 will have little legal defense.
Updated on July 7, 2020.
Houston is now the largest city in the United States where evictions can resume. The Texas Supreme Court ordered that evictions and debt collection proceedings could resume on May 19, and the number of evictions is expected to skyrocket.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner identified homeless shelters as a major hotspot for the coronavirus in his city, and Austin Mayor Steve Adler mentioned that the city plans to vote on acquiring another motel to house people experiencing homelessness during the pandemic.
The Harris County Commissioners Court approved a $30 million COVID-19 rental relief fund. Funds from the Harris County COVID-19 Relief Fund is expected to help between 20,000 to 25,000 families. The program will be managed by the Greater Houston Community Foundation.
More than 1,100 new eviction petitions have been filed in North Texas since March 16. While Texas’ statewide moratorium on evictions began in March, landlords were still able to submit filings for eviction cases.
Housing advocates are concerned that with more than 1.9 million Texans filing for unemployment relief in the past two months, eliminating eviction protections could lead to a sharp increase in homelessness. Texas’ shortage of affordable housing and the fact that renters have been disproportionately impacted by the economic fallout of the pandemic suggest that lifting the eviction moratoriums will adversely impact thousands of households.
The Texas Supreme Court ordered that eviction proceedings can resume on May 26. This does not apply to tenants who are protected through the federal CARES Act, including renters in homes covered by federally backed mortgages.
hristina Rosales of Texas Housers, an NLIHC state partner, expressed concern about low-income Texans and the rise in homelessness that may occur as a result of the coronavirus.
Texas Housers, NLIHC state partners and DHRC partners, drafted a white paper urging local officials to adopt policies and practices that provide resources for low-income renters and prioritize keeping Texans stably housed. Learn more here.
Fort Worth allocated $15.4 million in CARES Act funds to housing-related activities, including funds from the Community Services Block Grant, the Coronavirus Relief Fund, the Community Development Block Grant, the Emergency Solutions Grant, and Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS. The Fort Worth Neighborhood Services Department began accepting applications for several programs designed to help residents with housing and other household expenses, including emergency rental assistance.
The San Antonio Housing Authority (SAHA) announced that it will contribute $350,000 to the city’s COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Program. SAHA also announced a 25% rent forgiveness program for the month of June.
Rental assistance programs in Texas are unable to meet the overwhelming demand for financial assistance needed to prevent a wave of evictions and homelessness. Most Texas cities are not offering this support, and for the cities that do, the money is running out quickly.
The Houston City Council approved a proposal introduced by Mayor Sylvester Turner to allocate $15 million for emergency rental assistance. The program, which will use federal relief funding, will be managed by a local nonprofit and is anticipated to help at least 6,818 Houston residents.
Housing advocates in Texas are concerned about a potential surge of evictions and homelessness after the state moratorium on evictions are lifted. While the statewide moratorium halts trials, hearings, and eviction procedures, it does not suspend payments or late fees.
The city of Dallas began accepting applications for rental and mortgage assistance through an online portal on May 4. Due to high volume, however, many people reported difficulties in accessing the online rental and mortgage assistance website.
Chow Train, a food truck and nonprofit founded in 2011, has cooked nearly 45,000 meals for people experiencing homelessness in San Antonio.
A new hotline was established to connect Houston residents experiencing homelessness with free COVID-19 testing provided through Healthcare for the Homeless Houston.
Forty-one residents of the Dallas Life shelter in the Cedars tested positive for the coronavirus, and another 150 were likely exposed and are in quarantine. In wake of this outbreak, Dallas shelters are instituting more forceful protective measures.
The University of Texas School of Law created a website that tracks local and state housing policy responses in Texas. The website is being updated frequently and will include policy best practices to increase Texans’ housing stability.
The Houston Health Department is expanding COVID-19 testing to vulnerable communities through partnerships with community organizations and new mobile testing units.
The Texas Supreme Court extended the moratorium on eviction procedures until May 18. Texas Housers, an NLIHC state partner, expressed concerns about the long-term safety of low-income Texans, highlighting the need for emergency rental assistance when the moratorium is lifted and back-rent is due.
The Austin City Council voted to accept $2.35 million from the Department of Housing and Urban Development to help people experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless during the coronavirus pandemic. Council members also accepted a $272,065 Coronavirus Relief grant for Housing Opportunities for People with Aids.
City, county, nonprofit, and faith-based partners in Austin created “Eating Apart Together,” a coordinated food delivery system for people experiencing homelessness in Austin. The city also established a contract to provide 1,000 refrigerated ready-to-eat meals per day for people experiencing homelessness.
DHRC-member Texas Housers called on Texas Governor Greg Abbott to take additional measures to ensure Texans keep their homes amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The governor recently unlocked $11 million in tenant assistance.
Workers at the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless are wearing bandannas to protect against COVID-19.
In San Antonio, here are nearly 3,000 individuals who are homeless, and the COVID crisis is causing that number to quickly increase. San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg is working to provide appropriate social distancing options and housing to support the homeless population.
The city of Amarillo is working to protect people experiencing homelessness during the pandemic by moving people out of shelters and into non-congregate settings. The Salvation Army is currently the primary short-term shelter in Amarillo, but it has become overcrowded, increasing the risk of infection. Amarillo’s Director of Community Development reported that the city has moved approximately 25 families and some individuals out of the Salvation Army shelter and into apartments.
The Austin City Council unanimously approved almost $24 million in rental assistance. Last month, city leaders allocated $1.2 million for emergency rental assistance.
Updated on June 12, 2020.
The Bryan City Council allocated an additional $148,459 from the CARES Act to provide direct relief services to low- and moderate-income households. The city also reallocated $75,000 in Home Investment Partnership Program funds to the Tenant-Based Rental Assistance program to help tenants impacted by the pandemic.
Updated on June 12, 2020.
The Dallas City Council approved on June 24 an additional $10 million in federal funds to expand its rental and mortgage assistance program. The council also approved a $7.1 million program to help people experiencing homelessness find permanent housing.
The Dallas Observer reported that 44% of the $13.7 million that Dallas has distributed through its COVID-19 rental assistance program has gone to residents in some of the city’s wealthiest districts.
Updated on June 29, 2020.
The San Antonio City Council approved a $191 million COVID-19 recovery plan that will allocate $50.5 million to increase housing security, including rental assistance, fair housing counseling, homeless shelters, domestic violence prevention, and other strategies. Funding will stem from $96.3 million of federal funding, primarily through the Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF), and $94.6 million from the city’s general fund.
Updated on June 12, 2020.
The city of Waco and the Economic Opportunities Advancement Corporation have established a rental assistance program that will provide families impacted by COVID-19 with up to three months of rent or mortgage payments.
Updated on June 12, 2020.
Since Harris County’s ban on evictions ended on May 18, Harris County judges have awarded $637,500 in judgments to landlords in 387 cases filed during the eviction ban. An additional 2,188 hearings are scheduled in the coming weeks.
According to Texas Housers, Harris County has proceeded with eviction hearings behind closed doors during the pandemic. While a handful of cities and counties in Texas issued eviction protections, Harris County did not issue a long-term eviction moratorium.
Of the 3,652 evictions filed in Harris County between March 27 and June 22, at least 368 of those – approximately 10% – appear to be in violation of the CARES Act.
Updated on June 29, 2020.
Harris County distributed the first half of its $30 million Coronavirus Relief Fund dollars to 44 community-based organizations. These organizations will disperse the money to provide housing, utility, food, and childcare assistance to Harris County residents.
Updated on June 22, 2020.
Houston became the largest American city to resume evictions when it did not extend its local moratorium after Texas lifted the statewide moratorium last month. Housing advocates in Houston and across the state are concerned about an increase in evictions and homelessness. Lone Star Legal Aid, a nonprofit that advocates for low-income Texans, has received an influx of calls for assistance from tenants facing eviction or other issues with their landlord, including cut-off utilities.
Updated on June 22, 2020.
The Texas Health and Human Services publishes updated communications and media tools for spreading awareness about COVID-19 in Texas. Resources are available in both English and Spanish and are easily shareable.
Updated on June 12, 2020.
Federal, state, and local eviction moratoriums are rapidly expiring and the CARES Act supplemental unemployment benefits will end soon; at that time, millions of low-income renters will be at risk of losing their homes. The NLIHC estimates at least $100 billion in emergency rental assistance is needed to keep low-income renters stably housed during and after the pandemic. This tracker links to news reports of the growing evictions crisis in various cities and states. Check NLIHC's cumulative list of eviction updates.
According to a weekly survey conducted by the Census, in the third week of July Texas had the highest rate of housing insecurity of any state in the nation. 35.7% of adults in Texas reported they had missed their previous housing payment and/or had little confidence they would make their next one. In the same survey, 1,514,791 renters reported they had not paid their previous rental payment.
More than 5,100 evictions have been filed since the beginning of the pandemic in March. Harris County has seen a 500% increase in COVID cases since its eviction moratorium expired May 18. On July 25, when the federal eviction moratorium expired, one legal aid clinic in Houston received 1,358 eviction applications, a 36% increase from the same day last year. 40% of Houstonians currently cannot pay rent due to COVID-19.
July 28 Dallas
A legal aid lawyer in Dallas recently commented that they were “Trying to avoid a mass homelessness event here in Dallas. The situation is pretty dire.”
Updated: July 29
According to a weekly survey by the Census, 1 in 3 adults in the state either missed their last housing payment or have little/no confidence of being able to make next month’s housing payment.
In Houston, a $15 million rent relief fund was depleted within 90 minutes of opening. About 40% of renters in Houston doubt they can make July’s rent. 2,300 evictions were filed in Harris County in June. An estimated 7.5% of evictions filed in Harris County last month violated the CARES Act by not having an affidavit on file.
July 8 Dallas
Updated: July 16COVID-19 Resources Other
What to Know About Housing and Rent During the COVID-19 Emergency? https://tinyurl.com/y74ox85d
Arbor Realty Trust launched an innovative $2 million rental assistance program to help thousands of tenants and families significantly impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Arbor is contributing $1 million to the program and participating borrowers will match Arbor's advances to its tenants in need to help fill the rent gap during the hard-hit months of May and June. Together, the partnership program will provide $2 million in relief. https://tinyurl.com/y9r6x9vb