Mortgage Rental Assistance TWDuring the Stay at Home Order, Gov. JB Pritzker placed a moratorium on evictions to protect vulnerable residents struggling to pay their rent. The moratorium has since been extended to Aug. 22, but many Illinoisans are at risk of homelessness when it expires.

For a brief period this month, the Illinois Housing Development Authority is offering support to renters through the Emergency Rental Assistance program.

With a total of $150 million in funding, this is the largest rental assistance program in the nation. Recipients will receive up to $5,000 in aid, but the funding is limited and we still need help from the federal government to protect the livelihood of more Illinoisans.

To be eligible for the program, applicants must have fallen behind on their rent since March 1 and must be able to demonstrate income losses as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Individuals who have received prior pandemic-related rental assistance from the government—including the relief program administered by the City of Chicago—are not eligible. However, if you have applied for another government program and have not yet been approved, you may still apply.

Please note: You will need a government-issued photo ID and your landlord’s email address to apply. For more information about eligibility and required documents, find helpful resources at ERA.IHDA.org or call IHDA toll-free at 1-888-252-1119.

Applications open Aug. 10 at 9 a.m. and will be available at ERA.IHDA.org. The application period will close no later than Aug. 21. However, it may close earlier if IHDA receives an overwhelming number of applications, so apply as early as you possibly can. Successful applicants will be notified within 2-3 weeks of submitting their forms.

While applications are only available online, community partners are available to help people who cannot complete an application over the internet. A list of these partners will soon be available in the Resources section of the program’s website and via the toll-free number.

With questions about this program or other resources that may help you cope during these exceptionally tough times, please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office at (708) 632-4500 or http://senatorlightford.com/contact-us.

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