Applications now open for nearly $300 million in additional COVID-19 Emergency Assistance for renters and landlords


CHICAGO, Ill. (WCIA) — The Illinois Housing Development Authority announced that applications are now open for the second round of the Illinois Rental Payment (ILRPP) program, which Governor Pritzker announced on October 27.

According to officials, the reopening of ILRPP will provide an additional $297 million to renters and landlords in an effort to prevent evictions and keep families safe and secure while they regain their financial footing. It is the third major housing relief initiative in response to the pandemic in Illinois, with the state executing the nation’s best assistance program in 2020. 

Applications will be accepted here beginning Monday through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022. Applications will be processed as they are submitted. Money from this round will begin to be distributed to approved Illinoisans before the end of the calendar year. The additional ILRPP funding is expected to assist more than 32,500 Illinois households.

“I came into the governor’s office with a promise to rebuild and revitalize Illinois’ social services sector. That begins with doing everything possible so Illinoisans can find an affordable home and stay there,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Even with all the challenges of the pandemic, we are delivering on that promise. Illinois has given out more of our rental assistance to help vulnerable renters and their landlords than any other state. We are first in the nation at putting those dollars to work to support our state’s residents.”

“The need for housing assistance continues to be great in the face of the continued challenges brought on by the pandemic,” said Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton. “We see the struggle and stand with residents as our administration continues to put policies and resources to work to decrease homelessness in Illinois. Housing is also about being well and ensuring we can keep families housed is key to keeping Illinoisans safe and healthy during these unprecedented times.”

Officials said ILRPP provides direct funding to support Illinois tenants unable to pay their rent due to a COVID-19-related loss of income. Approved applicants will receive one-time grants of up to $25,000, paid directly to their landlords on their behalf. If the landlord chooses not to participate in the program, tenants may receive payments directly to make rental payments. In this application round, assistance will cover up to 18 months of emergency rental payments, including up to 15 months of missed payments and up to three months of future payments. Rent owed from June 2020 through April 2022 may be paid for with ILRPP funds. Priority will be given to households earning less than 50% of AMI and to households with one or more members who have been unemployed for at least 90 days.

Tenant eligibility requirements:

  • Household lives in Illinois and rents their home as their primary residence.
  • Household must have experienced a financial hardship directly or indirectly due to the pandemic.
  • Household income is below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI), adjusted for household size. 
  • Household must have an unpaid rent balance.
  • Proof of citizenship is not required. Rental assistance is not a “public charge” benefit.
  • Tenants residing in state- or federally-subsidized housing are eligible to apply.

“Housing is a right and keeping people in their homes is one of the most important things we can do to continue fighting COVID-19. These new Emergency Rental Assistance funds will prevent homelessness and foreclosures and help people regain the financial stability they lost during the pandemic and get back on their feet,” said Congressman Jesús “Chuy” García (IL-04).

Renters may apply for ILRPP assistance even if they received emergency rental assistance in the past through IHDA or one of the other units of government administering federal rental assistance. Households that received previous assistance, however, may not receive more than 18 months of total combined assistance, regardless of the source. In addition, households that received federal rental assistance previously may not receive further ILRPP payments for those same months previously covered. IHDA will adjust the ILRPP grant amount in these situations to avoid duplication of assistance.

This new round of ILRPP is funded through an appropriation in the federal American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (P.L. 117-2), which was signed into law by President Joe Biden in March 2021. The $1.9 trillion economic stimulus relief designed to speed up recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic included $21.55 billion allocated for state and local government rental assistance programs.

For more information and updates on the program, click here.

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