Rent Relief

Here to Stay

Here to Stay
by Zeph Fishlyn for SFADC 2021

Is your landlord pressuring you to leave? Are you behind on rent? You don’t have to move! There is help available.

Updated March 8, 2024

NOTE: Our remaining local COVID eviction protections expire August 29, 2023, but you still have rights! Eviction is always a legal process. There are free tenant rights clinics across the city here to help, and all San Francisco tenants facing an eviction are entitled to free legal representation.

If you receive any eviction papers (documents that contain words like “summons” or “complaint” or “unlawful detainer”), please contact or 415-659-9184 as soon as possible, or visit the Eviction Defense Collaborative in-person at 976 Mission Street. Open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 10-11:30AM and 1-2:30PM.

For help paying back rent, visit Learn more about eligibility requirements by visiting

If you or someone you know are being evicted from a shelter or living in a shelter with habitability violations, reach out to Shelter Client Advocates. You can contact them by phone (415)947-0797 or For more information about their services, visit

The Coalition on Homelessness is monitoring encampments sweeps and you can find information on past and upcoming sweeps on their website.

Frequently Asked Questions

You may be eligible for help from SF ERAP if you are a San Francisco resident, have a household income that is at or below 50% of Area Median Income (AMI) and you can demonstrate risk of homelessness or housing loss as a result of financial hardship, such as loss of income. Assistance is available regardless of immigration status and will not be considered for public charge.

SF ERAP can generally help with back rent, limited future rent, and security deposit and/or first and last months’ rent for a unit you are planning to move into. Certain subsidized housing types are not eligible for future rent or move-in assistance.

Season of Sharing Fund can generally help with housing (rent or mortgage, first and last month’s deposit) as well as other critical needs like utility payments to Bay Area households who are facing an unexpected challenge.

Don’t move out! Evictions are a legal process, and you have rights and access to free help. If your landlord is harassing you, asking you to sign documents, or telling you to move, reach out to a tenant rights group right away.

If you receive any eviction papers (documents that contain words like “summons” or “complaint” or “unlawful detainer”), please contact the Eviction Defense Collaborative as soon as possible. 

Depending on when your rent debt is from, different protections may apply:

  • For rent due March 1 – August 31, 2020: AB 832 prohibits evictions for nonpayment of rent for these months. The landlord cannot evict but can take you to small claims court starting November 1, 2021 for any rent that is still unpaid.  You must provide landlord a signed declaration in response to a 15-day notice. 
  • For rent due September 1, 2020- September 30, 2021: AB-2179 prohibits evictions for nonpayment of rent from this period as long as you give your landlord a signed declaration(s) in response to 15-day notice(s),  AND pay at least 25% of the missed rent from this period by September 30.
  • For rent due July 1, 2022- August 29, 2023: If Landlords seek to evict for non-payment of rent that came due between July 1, 2022 and August 29, 2023, tenants will be able to defend and win if they can present evidence to the court that the rent was not paid due to the COVID-19 pandemic due to our local moratorium

You should apply to the local rent relief program. Bay Legal also offers a Consumer Rent Debt Clinic on the fourth Friday of each month.  RSVP is required: Please call 415-982-1300 to RSVP and get details about the location and time.


No.  You will not be asked about immigration status. Help from rent relief programs also does not qualify as a “public charge” that can affect those applying for a green card. Learn more about eligibility for various public programs based on immigration status here.


Yes.  If you are separate financial households for other purposes (like filing taxes or applying for other benefits), then you can apply separately for rent relief as well.

You can apply and be eligible for rental assistance regardless of whether your housing was built with permits.  The information you provide will not be used for other purposes.

Yes. However, eligibility rules and requirements vary among different subsidized and

affordable housing programs. Contact an SF ERAP case manager or visit SFERAP’s website for more information. SF ERAP Helpline – (415) 653-5744 or