Due to the high claim volume in each program, claim responses may be delayed several days, and payments may not be received for multiple months. Claims are paid in order received, then approved. The approval email is your guarantee of payment. Please be sure to add emails from @commerce.wa.gov to your safe sender list.
Tenancy Preservation Program
Important Note: Payment for the Tenancy Preservation Program approved claims may not be expected for over twelve months from the date of claim approval. Claim approval is a guarantee of payment but not of payment date.
Evictions have proven to be the leading cause of homelessness throughout Washington. The Tenancy Prevention Program benefits both landlord and tenant by maintaining the tenancy while satisfying a judgment for non-payment of rent and three months of future rent. This keeps landlords from facing vacancy and turnover losses while preventing an eviction that would create barriers to tenants seeking and renting future housing.
Washington State’s Tenancy Preservation Program (2019 amendments to RCW 59.18.410(3) and 43.31.605(c)) became effective on June 29, 2019. The program aims to reduce homelessness by providing relief to low-income tenants facing eviction for non-payment of rent. Commerce will issue a zero-interest loan to landlords to preserve tenancy when a court finds the tenant eligible. Tenants must repay the loan in full to be eligible for future access to this program.
Who Can Submit a Claim?
All private market landlords that offer rental housing within the State of Washington with the claimed tenant(s) currently occupying the rental unit can qualify for the Tenancy Preservation Program.
How to Qualify for the Tenancy Preservation Program
A court order of eligibility is required to submit a claim application successfully. To obtain a court order of eligibility, both landlord and tenant must appear in person at the Superior Court in the rental property’s district and request either of the following:
- Stipulated Payment Agreement,
- Order of Eligibility
- Stay Action if a Writ of Restitution is ordered.
A Stipulated Payment Agreement is a court approved document outlining due dates for repayment of past-due rent to a landlord. Reasonable Repayment Plans do not qualify as Stipulated Agreements. If the tenant makes all payments on time, their tenancy is preserved. If the tenant fails to meet the requirements of this agreement, the landlord may apply for assistance from the program to preserve tenancy. If the tenant vacated or has provided the landlord with notice to vacate the housing, the claim will be denied.
An Order of Eligibility is a document showing that the Judge has found the tenant to be low-income, limited resourced or under financial hardship yet capable of repayment of the amount of the judgment.
A Stay Action prevents the landlord from acting on an awarded Writ of Restitution if certain conditions are met. If met, the landlord is required to dismiss the Writ of Restitution.
Review the Frequently Asked Questions document for more details.
Documents Required for Claim Submission
The following documents and information are required for claim submission. Please collect all documents before attempting to submit a claim:
- Statewide Vendor Identification (Payee) number
- Executed and current rental agreement
- Court documents:
- Finding of eligibility, and
- Judgment for landlord showing amount owed, and
- Stipulated Payment Agreement, or
- Writ of Restitution with Stay Action
- Commerce form:
- Tenant ledger showing all charges included in the Judgement.
- Complete the online claim form