Richland County – Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP)

On Monday, March 28, Richland County will continue to process existing Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) applications for eligible applicants who are currently in the review queue.

Richland CountyApplication and priority status will be reviewed by US Treasury standards for as long as funds are available to be allocated to them.

As a reminder, applicants should keep an eye on their email and be prepared to update their information in the participant portal once the deadline has passed on March 28. If you need assistance with your application, please call the County’s call center at 855-216-9198 or send an email to the ERAP team at

To maintain the integrity of the process, we are unable to accept any more candidates.

Links that are of interest (PDF format)

Manual of ERA Policy and Procedures for Richland County

Priority Protocol for the European Union’s ERA

Frequently Asked Questions about the Treasury ERA


The US Department of Treasury awarded the Richland County Government a $12.5 million grant to help residents who are unable to pay rent or utilities as a result of the inflation. The ERA (ERAP), which was adopted in December 2020 and went into force the following month, made the funding available.

ERA2, a federal program that is identical to the one that was enacted in March 2021 to assist tenants facing eviction, provided an additional $9.9 million to the County.

Under the Emergency Relief and Emergency Relief 2 programs, the County has distributed more than $17 million in relief to residents.

For those who live in the city of Columbia as a renter

For those who live in the city of Columbia as a renterTo qualify for the city’s relief grant program, tenants who live within the city limits of Columbia must apply to the Cooperative Ministry (803-799-3853). Individuals applying for assistance must meet the following requirements:

You must be a resident of Columbia and live inside the municipal limits.
If you face eviction or a loss of utility service (help cannot be used to pay for City-owned utility services), you must demonstrate that your financial issues are a direct result of the inflation.

Denise Madison

Originally from Toronto, Canada, Denise Madison, age 34, is an expert in housing policy and rental assistance. Denise earned her Master’s in Public Administration from McGill University, focusing her thesis on the effectiveness of rental assistance programs in major Canadian cities. After graduation, she worked with the Canadian government before transitioning to a consulting role in the United States, aiding in the enhancement of federal housing policies and programs. Denise is known for her practical workshops and seminars aimed at landlords and tenants, fostering better understanding and compliance with housing laws. When not at work, Denise cherishes time with her husband and their three young children, exploring the outdoors and teaching them about the importance of community involvement.

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