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NWT extending rental assistance program


The Northwest Territories government is extending the Transitional Rent Supplement Program until the end of November. 

The program provides between $100 to $500 a month to residents with low to modest income whose shelter costs are unaffordable. 

“The Transitional Rent Supplement Program is a good resource for those residents struggling to pay their rent, not working or working less. In these times of economic uncertainty, it is critical that we continue to look for ways to support our residents to secure safe and maintain housing stability,” Paulie Chinna, minister responsible for the NWT Housing Corporation, was quoted as saying. 

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The government had planned on ending the seldom used rental program at the end of March, but extended its life to help people in the territory during the Covid-19 pandemic.

That extension was slated to end in September, when the Canadian Housing Benefit, a new federally backed program, was expected to open. 

According to a press release, however, the territorial housing corporation and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation are still working to finalize design elements of that new rental support program. It will be a cost-shared program between the territorial and federal governments. 

NWT residents in private market rentals who are spending more than 30 per cent of their total income on rent are eligible for the Transitional Rent Supplement Program. Residents who are receiving income assistance or live in public housing are not eligible. 

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Inquiries about the program can be made at 1-844-698-4663. 

Other housing and rent supports in the territory include the Homelessness Assistance Fund. Rent on public land leases are also being waived from April 1, 2020 until March 31, 2021. 

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