The Rental Assistance Program is here to help keep families stably housed, and ensure that tenants and Housing Providers/Landlords are financially secure to prevent a tide of evictions due to COVID-19.
If you are a renter whose primary residence is in Illinois and are behind on rent due to economic hardship caused by COVID-19, you may be eligible for up to 15 months of rental payments to cover back-rent owed from June 2020 through August 2021.
As a renter, your primary residence must be in Illinois. Housing Providers/Landlords living in Illinois are encouraged to apply to avoid foreclosure due to their tenants’ inability to pay rent. Out-of-state Housing Providers with rental property in Illinois may be eligible for assistance through the Illinois Rental Payment Property Program (see Rental Assistance Programs and Additional Help section below).
Don’t know what “experienced financial hardship directly or indirectly due to the pandemic” might include? Some examples: Out of work, reduction in hours at work, loss of spousal/child support, inability to find work, having to stay home with children due to closure of day care/school.
Eligible recipients of emergency rental assistance will not be penalized for applying for and/or receiving rental assistance.
To qualify, your income limit depends on the county you live in; it is adjusted for the number of people living in your household, including you. Check the left column of this chart to find the county you live in and the top row for how many people live in your household. If your income is at or below the number indicated, you meet the income eligibility requirement for assistance.
If you are a renter or Housing Provider/Landlord who has renters in Illinois and meet the requirements in the 4-Step Eligibility Check, then you may be eligible to apply for rental assistance.
If IHDA’s Illinois Rental Payment Program (ILRPP) is accepting applications, apply through the Illinois Housing Development Authority using the button below. Check back regularly to see if this program is accepting applications.
TIP: This is a joint application that requires both the renters and the Housing Provider/Landlord to submit their information.
If ILRPP is not accepting applications at this time, contact an IDHS service provider agency in your area. Provider agencies can walk you through the application process and help you apply for rental assistance.
TIP: Individuals can apply to IHDA and IDHS rental assistance programs but will only be granted assistance from one of these two programs.
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps eligible low-income households pay for home energy services*. Energy costs can place severe stress on a family’s budget—sometimes forcing households to make painful decisions regarding which bills to pay and which necessities to survive without. To apply for utility assistance, begin your pre-application process to get connected with a local agency that can help.
Eviction Help Illinois provides free legal aid, mediation services, and connections to other resources including rental assistance to increase housing stability. Mediation is an opportunity for landlords and tenants to resolve issues with the help of a knowledgeable and neutral person.
See if you qualify for free legal aid for housing issues.
In addition to rental assistance, IDHS offers Illinois families the necessary support systems to help them survive and ultimately thrive.
Income-eligible renters in Illinois can get up to 15 months in rental assistance, regardless of immigration status.
All programs will offer assistance with up to 12 months of unpaid or past due rent and up to 3 months of future rent. Depending on the program you apply for, you may also be eligible for assistance with utility payments as well.
Encourage your tenants who are behind on rent for 30 days or more due to pandemic-related economic hardship to apply for emergency rental assistance. Here are a few resources to help facilitate the application process.
Reaffirming Governor Pritzker’s commitment to housing stability and eviction prevention during the pandemic, the Illinois Rental Payment Program (ILRPP) will deploy multiple rounds of funding totaling $1.5 billion dollars to fund two statewide rental assistance programs—nearly 4 times the amount available to our state last year. We expect there will be enough funding to help our most vulnerable residents.
Federally and state-funded programs also provide a combination of emergency financial assistance, case management, and community outreach to address housing challenges Illinois renters may be facing.
The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) estimates that there are approximately 414,000 vulnerable households that are experiencing housing insecurity in Illinois. An estimated 60,000 of these households are vulnerable to eviction in 2021. This is triple the number of evictions in Illinois in 2019, demonstrating the potential for a significant increase in COVID-19 related evictions. Housing insecurity caused by the pandemic affects a disproportionate number of low-income renters, disabled renters, veterans, and renters of color.