Frequently Asked Questions

What is the program’s purpose?

Keep Oakland Housed works to prevent Oakland residents from losing their housing by providing legal representation, emergency financial assistance, and supportive services. Download two-page printout, an easy to share snapshot about Keep Oakland Housed.

Who is eligible to receive services?

All Oakland residents experiencing a housing crisis who have a household income at or below 30% of Area Median Income, with priority to extremely low-income households. Legal representation will be provided to tenants with an active eviction lawsuit up to 50% AMI. Click here for Area Median Income ranges in Alameda County.

How can residents access the services?

See the How to Get Help section.

If I am a legal provider, how do I access money to keep someone from losing their home?

If you are a legal provider, the breakdown is as follows:

  • East Bay Community Law Center
    • send applications to Catholic Charities
  • Eviction Defense Center
    • send applications to BACS
  • Any other legal provider
    • If a single adult(s) – Bay Area Community Services
    • If a family with children under 18 – Catholic Charities
If you are any other provider, the breakdown is as follows:
  • If an adult(s) 18-54 years old: contact Bay Area Community Services
  • If a family with children under 18 or an older adult 55+: contact Catholic Charities

What documentation is required to receive financial assistance?

  • Completed application with Housing Crisis documentation
  • ID or other proof of identify if ID not available
  • Proof of Income
  • 3-day notice, unlawful detainer filings, etc.
  • W-9 from Landlord or new lease agreement

Will a check be written directly to residents?

No. We will only create and send check to landlords or third-party providers who provide us with a valid W9. If funds are for additional crisis needs, funds will be paid to the vendor directly.

If I already received support through one organization, can I go to the other organization for further support?

There is no need to go between both agencies to get further support. Each need is reviewed individually and if there is a need that goes above the general amount of money or services, the organization you are working with will continue to help you if that need is identified as a need that can be further supported through KOH.

I received a three-day notice what shall I do?

  • If I am an adult(s) 18-54 years old, call Bay Area Community Services at 510-238-5091.
  • If I have a family with children under 18 or am an older adult 55+, call Catholic Charities East Bay at 510-768-3100.

I have been served with an eviction lawsuit (Unlawful Detainer) what shall I do?

Please contact the East Bay Community Law Center at 510-548-4040 and ask for housing intake.

My landlord is threatening to evict me, what shall I do?

Contact any of the three collaborating organizations. Depending on the underlying basis for the threat, you will be referred to the appropriate agency. Legal Representation
East Bay Community Law Center (EBCLC): 510-548-4040 and ask for housing intake. EBCLC represents tenants in eviction lawsuits to keep people housed in their current apartments. Emergency Financial Assistance and Supportive Services Bay Area Community Services (BACS): 510-238-5091 Catholic Charities East Bay (CCEB): 510-768-3100 Bay Area Community Services and Catholic Charities East Bay provide emergency financial assistance and case management services to Oakland residents so that their housing is stabilized for the long-term.

What languages are spoken by program staff?

English, Spanish, Cantonese, and Mandarin

I was recently evicted. Can you help me find a new place to live?

Contact Bay Area Community Services (BACS) at 510-899-9289, or text 510-759-4877 for help.

My landlord is harassing me, how can this program help me?

Call Bay Area Community Services (BACS) or Catholic Charities East Bay (CCEB) for consultation and support. BACS: 510-238-5091 CCEB: 510-768-3100

What are your office hours? Are you available to help at night?

Currently, the East Bay Community Law Center and Catholic Charities East Bay are open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Bay Area Community Services is 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and is open on Saturdays.

How can others support Keep Oakland Housed?

Individuals interested in helping Oakland residents remain securely in their homes can donate now: Foundations and corporate funders who would like to support Keep Oakland Housed should contact the Donor Services team at the San Francisco Foundation at or 415-733-8590 Download two-page printout , an easy to share snapshot about Keep Oakland Housed.

How is KOH expanding services in response to COVID-19?

KOH is helping keep Oaklanders in their housing. The City of Oakland received $36.9 million in California State allocated CARES Act funding. $5 million of those funds were allotted for renter and homeowner relief. This funding will provide one-time financial assistance to low income renters and homeowners impacted by COVID-19. The application period opened on September 1, 2020. Funds must be disbursed by December 30, 2020. Available services:

  • Rental Assistance: Low income tenants in Oakland who have a documented housing crisis like a 3-day notice or proof of layoff or unemployment due to COVID-19.
  • Legal Assistance: Low-income tenants in Oakland who have an eviction lawsuit or legal questions concerning their housing.
  • Housing Problem-Solving: Oakland residents who are unstably housed, living in motels or other temporary housing and need support to ensure they do not become homelessness.
You may be eligible for assistance if you are experiencing a housing crisis and earn less than the amount listed below. This includes anyone whose income has dropped to below these levels due to COVID-19. If you need help, please call 211 and ask for Keep Oakland Housed, or visit the Get Help page on our site.

What is Housing Problem Solving and how will it help?

Housing Problem Solving supports rapid resolution to housing crises for people with unstable housing, including light ongoing support to make sure the solution ‘sticks.’ Problem Solving works with participants to identify options, overcome barriers, develop resolution plans, and carry them out. Flexible financial assistance can be deployed to support a housing option. Problem Solving includes follow-up with tenants and landlords as needed to address other barriers to remaining housed.

Why are there multiple eligibility requirements and different income limits?

Keep Oakland Housed started in 2018 and is funded through private foundations and individual contributions. The collaborative set income limits to prioritize the most vulnerable community members. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Oakland made additional funds available for rental relief and homelessness prevention. The City set a higher income limit for these emergency relief funds. This CARES Act funding must be expended by December 30, 2020. Higher income limits only apply to CARES Act funding.