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How to receive rental, mortgage assistance due to COVID-19 pandemic in Illinois

According to Gov. Pritzker's office, the assistance programs will help approximately 40,000 households before the end of 2020
Credit: KSKD

CHICAGO — Illinois Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Housing Development Authority announced applications for rental assistance are available for those who rent and have lost a job or income due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Illinois Housing Development Authority will allocate $150 million to help income-eligible residents across the state to pay their rent during the pandemic, according to a press release from Gov. Pritzker’s office.

Tenant eligibility:

• Household income before March 1 was at or below 80% of the Area Median Income;

• An adult member of the household must have had a loss of income due to the COVID-19 crisis on or after March 1

• Household has an unpaid rent balance that began on or after March 1

Those who are approved will receive one-time grants of $5,000 paid directly to their landlords to cover missed rent payments from March and prepay payments through December, or until the $5,000 is used, whichever comes first. The assistance will be in the form of a grant and repayment will not be required.

Applications will be accepted Aug. 10 through Aug. 21. The governor’s office said due to anticipated high volume, the application window could close early. Approximately 30,000 tenants are expected to receive funding.

Click here to apply

Following the application period for rental assistance, Illinois Housing Development Authority will open applications for emergency mortgage assistance, providing $150 million to homeowners impacted by the pandemic.

Homeowner eligibility:

• Household adjusted gross income from 2019 Tax Return was at or below 120% of the Area Median Income

• An adult member of the household has had a loss of income due to the COVID-19 crisis on or after March 1

• Homeowner’s mortgage was current as of Feb. 29

• The mortgage is past due or in forbearance

It’ll be available beginning on Aug. 24 and will assist homeowners who have experienced a COVID-19-related loss of income resulting in past-due mortgage balances starting from March. Approved applicants will receive up to $15,000 paid directly to their mortgage servicer. Assistance will cover the homeowner’s past due or forbearance balance and their regular mortgage payments through Dec. 30 or until the funding is exhausted, whichever comes first.

Payments may include all escrowed first mortgage expenses including property taxes, insurance and certain fees. The assistance will be in the form of a grant and repayment will not be required, the governor’s office said.

Applications will be accepted from Aug. 24 through September 4. Due to the anticipated high volume, the application window may close early. The program is expected to assist approximately 10,000 households.

Click here to apply

According to Gov. Pritzker’s office, together – the programs are the largest emergency housing assistance programs in the nation and will help approximately 40,000 households before the end of 2020.

“We are in a moment that requires a historic effort to mitigate this virus’s devastating effects on the health and livelihoods of the residents of this state – one that centers on rebounding with a stronger, more inclusive economy on the other side,” said Gov. JB Pritzker. “Keeping people in their homes isn’t just a moral obligation, it’s an economic one, and I’m incredibly proud that even in tough financial times for the state, we used our federal resources to build the largest pandemic housing stability program of any state in the nation.”

“As COVID-19 continues to impact our state, it is more important than ever that vulnerable households have the resources and support they need to stay in their homes,” said IHDA Executive Director Kristin Faust. “I thank Governor Pritzker and the Illinois General Assembly for making this funding possible, and I encourage those who have lost a job or seen their income decline as a result of COVID-19 visit our application portals to apply.”

Financial assistance from both programs is funded through Illinois’ allocation of the federal CARES Act.