HOPE Program

What is the HOPE Program?

The Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions Program (HOPE Program) is a housing assistance program administered by the North Carolina Office of Recovery and Resiliency (NCORR). 

The Orange County Department of Housing and Community Development is administering HOPE in Orange County. HOPE provides rent and utility assistance to Orange County residents experiencing housing distress due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Up to six months of assistance may be provided to allow applicants to remain in safe housing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Click here to see the difference between the Emergency Housing Assistance (EHA) fund and the HOPE Program.

Eligible Applicants

In order to be eligible for assistance through the HOPE Program, you must: 

  • Live in Orange County
  • Live in a rental property (be a renter) 
  • Earn less than or equal to 80% of the area median income (see income limits below)
  • Be late in rent and/or utility payments upon the date of application
  • Have an urgent need for rent and/or utility assistance due to the COVID-19 pandemic

The most current income limits for Orange County are below:

  • 1-person household: $50,900
  • 2-person household: $58,200
  • 3-person household: $65,450
  • 4-person household: $72,700
  • 5-person household: $78,550
  • 6-person household: $84,350
  • 7-person household: $90,150
  • 8-person household: $96,000

Eligible Costs

HOPE may pay for rent arrears and future payments and utility arrears. HOPE cannot pay for rent if no rent is past due as of the date of application and cannot pay for utility payments that are not past due. HOPE cannot cover application fees, security deposits, or other housing costs.

Rent Assistance

HOPE may pay for rent arrears and future payments. HOPE cannot pay for rent if no rent is past due as of the application date. If an applicant does have past due rent, HOPE can pay for those arrears, plus future recurring rent payments up to a total of six months of assistance (counting both past months being covered and future months).

Utility Assistance

HOPE may pay for utility arrears. HOPE cannot pay for utility payments that are not at least 30 days past due as of the application date.  

HOPE can only pay for "essential" utility payments, defined as: electricity, water, sewer/wastewater, natural gas, and/or propane delivery for home use. Internet, cable, phone, and other "non-essential" utilities cannot be covered.

How to Apply

There are two ways to apply:

  1. Phone: dial 2-1-1 
  2. Online: https://nc211.org/hope

Applicants are encouraged to call 2-1-1 if they need help completing the application.

If you wish to have a family member, friend, or other individual help you complete the application, you will need to complete a Communication Designee Form or Limited Power of Attorney Form.

What You Will Need to Provide 

*Refer to the Application Checklist in addition to the information below

  • Proof of identification (driver’s license, state-issued ID card, military ID, U.S. Passport, Medicare or Medicaid card, Social Security card, or birth certificate) 
  • Current lease, if you have a written lease
  • Utility bill(s) (must be past due) if applying for utility assistance
  • Proof of residence of the rental unit (such as a form of ID that includes your address, utility bill, voter registration, standard piece of mail)

HOPE Program Documents