Sounds like you'd be a good candidate for NACA's first time homebuyer program. Check out their site: www.naca.com. There is no down payment and no closing costs. They do, however, require that you have some savings (reserves) to ensure that you won't slip up on mortgage payments (along with unexpected repairs and other emergencies).
Rent to Own options are often loaded with stipulations that can appear "scammish" (i.e. option to purchase deposit will be forfeited if you're late on a payment). Most likely you'll be charged slightly higher than market average rent (which they will often times justify by saying a portion of it will go towards the purchase price.) Moreover, the option to purchase is often a price that is higher than market average. Its often times just a clever way for these property owners to generate extra income at your expense.
Your best bet is to check out that non-profit (NACA) and once prequalified, work with an agent to find something within your budget.
Good Luck. I think you'll do well in the long run by purchasing rather than renting. You stated you're in a bit of a pinch and need to find something quickly. If you have no choice, then please avoid the rent to own route. Put the extra money you'd be spending on that option into your bank account and work towards owning for less.... more