If you’re a Manitoban who has to pay housing costs and you get Employment and Income Assistance (EIA), you could be eligible to receive a financial benefit from the government called “rent assist”.
This amount will be included in your monthly EIA payments.
This rent assist is meant to help you with the costs associated with housing, such as rent, mortgage payments, property taxes, and other fees related to owning or renting a home.
The amount you can receive will depend on a number of factors, including how many people live with you, whether you are renting from Manitoba Housing or living in subsidized or unsubsidized housing, and whether utility costs such as water, electricity and heat are included in your rent.
Even if you don’t currently get EIA, you could still be eligible to receive rent assistance.
Rent Assistance Eligibility
Wondering if you’re eligible to receive rent assistance?
Here are the eligibility requirements if you don’t currently receive EIA benefits:
- You pay rent or room and board in some form of unsubsidized housing
- You are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
In addition, here are some annual income requirements based on the amount of people in your family household:
|Single person under 55 years old||Single person aged 55 years or older, or who qualifies for the Disability Tax Credit or receiving CPPD benefits||Two adults||Three or four people (or one adult and one child)||Five or more people|
|Net annual income of less than||$25,440||$28,720||$32,000||$41,400||$52,640|
Now, there are some cases where you may not be eligible for rent assist in Manitoba.
Here are a few examples of those cases:
- You already rent your home from Manitoba Housing
- You’re already receiving some other type of housing assistance or subsidy for your particular unit
- You live on a First Nations reserve
- You live in a residential care facility, hospital, nursing home, or in student housing
Still confused about whether or not you qualify for rent assist? Check out this fact sheet or this rent assist benefit calculator.
How Much is Rent Assist?
The amount you can receive for rent assistance will cover up to 80% of the median market rent.
This payment amount will also vary from person to person depending on your circumstances, such as:
- How many people live in your household
- Your net annual household income in the tax year used to determine your eligibility
- Your age (over or under the age of 55)
- Whether you qualify for the Disability Tax Credit or received the CPPD in the tax year used to determine your eligibility
The tax year used to determine your eligibility will depend on when you decide to apply for rent assistance.
If you apply between January and June, eligibility will be dependent on your tax return from 2 years before (i.e. if you apply in February 2023, your 2021 tax return would be used).
If you apply between July and December, eligibility will be dependent on your tax return from the year before i.e. if you apply in November 2023, your 2022 tax return would be used).
To get an estimate of your rent assist benefit, use this handy calculator provided by the official Manitoba government site.
Benefits are paid once a year by direct deposit after your annual tax return has been filed and your annual income has been reassessed.
How to Apply for Rent Assist in Manitoba
Applying for rent assistance is simple and straightforward.
You can download the application form or contact Provincial Services to have a paper version mailed to you.
Here is the contact information for Provincial Services:
100 – 114 Garry Street
Winnipeg, MB R3C 4V4
Toll free: 1-877-587-6224
Frequently Asked Questions
- Who is eligible for rent assistance in Manitoba?
Rent Assist is a benefit available to low-income unsubsidized home renters and other Manitobans who receive Employment and Income Assistance (EIA) and need help with costs related to housing. Eligibility varies depending on a few factors, including your household size and net annual income. For a full list of the eligibility criteria, click here.
- How much rent assistance will I receive?
The amount you can receive for rent assistance will depend on the amount of family members living in your household, your net annual household income, whether you’re under or over the age of 55, and whether you qualify for the Disability Tax Credit or have received the Canada Pension Plan Disability.
It’s important to note that the benefit will only cover up to 80% of the median market rent.
- What is the cost of rent in Manitoba?
According to Zumper, the average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in Manitoba increased by 8% compared to a year earlier, to $1,100. Rent costs will vary based on the area where you rent and the size of the home or apartment.
To get an idea of what the “median market rent” is which is used to determine the payment amounts for rent assist, check out this link which breaks it down by living area.