RAFT Emergency Assistance

Have you fallen behind on your rent mortgage or utilities? Assistance may be available to you.

The Residential Assistance for Families in Transition, RAFT Program helps keep households in stable housing situations when facing eviction, foreclosure, loss of utilities, and other housing emergencies. RAFT provides qualifying households with up to $7,000 per household in a 12-month period to preserve current housing or move into new housing. RAFT can cover utilities, moving costs, and overdue rent.

These programs provide financial assistance that can be used to help keep their housing, obtain new housing or otherwise avoid becoming homeless regardless of source of income, lack of income, lack of income, citizenship, or immigration status.

RAFT is targeted to households up to 50% AMI or 60% of AMI for households who are at risk of domestic violence.

Household Size Annual Income Limit for RAFT

RAFT Application

You can choose to start the application process by clicking here

This link provides information regarding eligibility and required documents. After completing your application, you will receive your application ID via email. You may be asked to upload additional documents, which can also be done through this link.

Facing Eviction Resources: Free legal aid is available to assist low-income tenants with referrals, legal information, and legal representation for evictions statewide, click here or you can go to this website to find a legal aid program near you. Massachusetts Community Mediation Center also offer free pre court mediation between landlords and tenants.

If you’re unable to access or submit an online application please contact our office at
413-863-9781 or email us at: fcrhra.info@gmail.com for assistance.

For households applying to RAFT for assistance with rent arrears, a notice to quit or eviction notice/court summons is now required.

For Landlords/Property Owners

To learn more about the RAFT program, visit: Residential Assistance for Families in Transition (RAFT) program | Mass.gov

Click below for a step-by-step guide on how to apply for the RAFT program:

The RAFT application system requires both a tenant application and a landlord application for tenants who are requesting rental assistance. Landlords and property owners can (a) begin the RAFT application process for their tenants who may need to request financial assistance for overdue rent OR (b) complete the application once the tenant has submitted their application.

To begin the landlord/property owner application process, you must first register an account as a new user if you have not already done so here: User Registration (mass.gov)

***Your account must have info entered for the Payee, Properties, and Payment Methods sections on your profile before you can apply.

Once a landlord/property owner has an account, you can apply here: MA Emergency Housing Payment Assistance Portal (mass.gov) If your tenant has already completed their application at the time you are submitting the landlord application, be sure to include the Tenant Application Code that you received in your email. Note that the Tenant Application Code is different from their Case ID.

For more guidance on how to apply and create a landlord profile, please utilize this reference guide: Housing Assistance Application Reference Guide (mass.gov)

For a list of landlords’/property owners’ Frequently Asked Questions, visit: Landlord FAQs download (mass.gov)

For other resources, including recordings of webinars about Landlord/Property Owner RAFT Application Portal, visit: RAFT Public Resource and Training Portal | Mass.gov

Discrimination by a landlord is prohibited

Landlords should be aware that Chapter 151B of the Massachusetts General Laws prohibits discrimination by a landlord against any tenant receiving federal, state, or local housing subsidies, including rental assistance or rental supplements, because the individual is such a recipient.

A landlord’s refusal to accept emergency rental assistance, that covers the entire amount owed to the landlord, may, in some circumstances, constitute a violation of Chapter 151B.  Landlords should consult their own legal counsel for advice before declining rental assistance that covers all outstanding rent arrears.

Additional Housing Resources

Housing Consumer Education Center: resource website

MassLegalHelp.org: know your legal rights

Community Legal Aid: apply online for free legal help

MA Attorney General’s Office: Consumer Advocacy & Response Division 

EOHLC: emergency assistance for families facing housing crisis

Servicenet: shelter and housing services

Community Action