Deadline Extended To Aug. 28 For Emergency Rental Assistance — Apply Now!

Deadline Extended To Aug. 28 For Emergency Rental Assistance — Apply Now!

The Illinois Housing Development Authority announced today (Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020) that it has extended the deadline for Illinois renters to apply for aid by one week — to noon Aug. 28 due to those impacted by the storms last Monday.

In addition, landlords will be given an additional two days, through Aug. 30, to complete their portion of the application. The Emergency Rental Assistance program provides $5,000 to eligible tenants who have seen their household income decline as a result of the COVID-19.

“With over 750,000 Illinoisans losing power as a result of the strong derecho that swept across northern Illinois a week ago, it’s important we provide additional time to file and complete application for assistance,” said IHDA Executive Director Kristin Faust. “I am pleased to extend the deadline as there were many renters and landlords without power for nearly a week, which negatively impacted their ability to apply to the Emergency Rental Assistance program.”

For an application for to be considered complete, landlords are required to submit additional documentation before their application period closes on Aug. 30.

It is recommended that renters be proactive in notifying their landlords they have applied for assistance under the Emergency Rental Assistance program and that they will receive an email from the IHDA inviting them to submit required documentation.

Renters affected by the storms, or those requiring assistance navigating the application process, are encouraged to reach out to one of the 62 Community and Outreach Assistance organizations with which IHDA has partnered. These organizations can be found on the “resources” page at era.ihda.org.

Application assistance can be provided through The Neighbor Project in Aurora by calling 630-906-9400. For more information on the program, call 312-883-2720.

The Illinois Housing Development Authority developed the Emergency Rental Assistance Program to support Illinois tenants unable to pay their rent due to a COVID-19-related loss of income.

Tenants whose application is approved will receive a one-time grant of $5,000 paid directly to their landlord to cover missed rent payments beginning March 2020 and prepay payments through December 2020, or until the $5,000 is exhausted, whichever comes first.

For additional help, applicants may also contact IHDA’s call center at: (312) 883-2720, or toll-free at: (888) 252-1119. For those who are deaf, hard of hearing or speech-impaired, please contact Navicore Solutions for free assistance at: (877) 274-4309 (TTY).

Extension of the ERA program will not affect or delay the launch of the Emergency Mortgage Assistance program on August 24, 2020.

Frequently Asked Questions


1. Who applies for the ERA Program?

  • Tenants apply for ERA. But in order for an application to be complete, your landlord must participate as well.

2. What are the eligibility requirements?

  • You, or an adult member of your household, has had a loss of income due to COVID-19;
  • You have an unpaid rent balance that began on or after March 1, 2020;
  • Your household income before March 1, 2020 was less than the maximum allowed for your area; AND
  • You submit all required documents by the document deadline.

3. Is the application long and difficult to complete?

  • No, the application is short. It may only take you 10 minutes to apply. You will be asked to provide identification. Forms of acceptable IDs include:
    • Driver’s license
    • Temporary Visitors Driver’s License
    • Matricula Consular
    • Foreign Passport (regardless of expiration date)
    • Resident Identity Card
    • If the address on your ID is not current, you must also provide evidence of your current address, such as:
    • Utility Bill (issued within 90 days of application)
    • Bank Statement (dated within 90 days prior to application)
    • Credit Card/Debit Card Statement (dated within 90 days prior to application)
    • Social Security Award Letter (dated within 90 days prior to application)

4. Can I apply for ERA if I live with roommates?

  • Yes, you may apply if you live with one or more roommates, but only one application per household is allowed.

5. How do I know if my income qualifies?

  • To qualify, your pre-COVID-19 income had to be at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income. Please input your income and zip code at era.ihda.org to see if you are eligible to apply.

6. What if my household income was over 80% AMI?

  • Unfortunately, you’re ineligible for this assistance if your household income exceeded the maximum limit.

7. What is required for proof of a COVID-19-related loss of income after March 1, 2020?

  • The application requires a self-certification of income loss due to COVID-19. You must certify under penalty of perjury that all the information in your application is true and accurate.

8. Must I have lost my job to qualify for the program?

  • No. A reduction in hours due to COVID-19 is also acceptable.

Now Extended Through Aug. 28

SOURCE: Illinois Housing Development Authority news release