Bernalillo Co. now taking applications for utility, rental assistance

Coronavirus New Mexico

Residents must live outside Albuquerque city limits to qualify for county help

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Bernalillo County is taking applications for utility and rental assistance for people who live outside Albuquerque city limits. The rent program comes from a grant through the U.S. Treasury Department and $5 million is available to assist households that are unable to pay rent and utilities because of the pandemic. There is a separate rent program for people who live within city limits.



The program will be applied towards past due rent and utility payments starting April 2020 through December 2021, for up to six months of rental and utility assistance payments, but no more than $10,000 for rent and/or utilities. The county says the grant does not cover mortgage payments nor mortgage owners’ utilities.

Residents can verify if they are located outside city limits by using this map.

The following are qualifications for applicants who live outside city limits:

  • Have COVID-19 related income loss that has made it difficult or unable to pay rent;
  • Have documentation that shows the household’s current total gross household income is less than 80% of the median family income (chart below)
  • Currently, be on a lease, and not be recipients of other federally subsidized rental assistance programs (such as Section 8 or project-based voucher assistance, a housing choice voucher, or public housing);
  • Not be a full-time student whose rent is paid by someone else.

The county says paper applications can be downloaded at bernco.gov/RENT. Applications and copies of the required documents can be delivered to the downtown Bernalillo County Treasurer’s tax payment drop-box at Fifth and Marquette NW.  Applications can also be mailed to:

Bernalillo County
Attn: Economic Development
C/O Sulema Lenz
One Civic Plaza
10th Floor, County Manager’s Office
Albuquerque, NM 87102

Applicants can also fill out an online application.

The following is the list of required documents:

  • Copy of government-issued photo ID or head of household, such as a New Mexico driver’s license, passport, green card, U.S. Visa, or other identity cards.  
  • Proof of household’s current gross annual income
    • Proof of gross annual income as of 12/31/2020 for all household members (3rd party documentation or signed self-certification form or written and written/signed statement). Any household members who did not have income before COVID-19 need to submit a self-certification of zero income.
    • Third-party documentation includes:
      • 2020 tax return,
      • Social Security/SSI benefit letter,
      • Proof of child support,
      • TANF assistance letter,
      • Veterans benefit letter,
      • Proof of annuities,
      • Proof of retirement funds,
      • Pension benefit letter,
      • Worker’s compensation/severance pay verification,
      • Armed Forces pay verification,
      • Student financial assistance verification,
      • Regular contributions or gifts verification,
      • Alimony verification
  • Proof of COVID-related income loss, such as CARES Act unemployment benefits letter, a letter from employer, pay stubs showing reduced hours, self-certification/written and signed statement, etc.
  • Proof of lease or rental agreement, invoicing/receipts from extended stay hotel/motels, or self-certification of a verbal lease.
  • Proof of past due utility bills or disconnect notice.
    • Qualifying utilities include water, gas, electricity, and/or internet service.

Meanwhile, Bernalillo County residents that live within the city can visit cabq.gov/family/services/homeless-services/eviction-prevention for assistance programs from the city or they can call 505-768-2000.

Lastly, the county says residents that need help with mortgage payments, can visit housingnm.org/static/covid-assistance.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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