Relief for Renters and Homeowners

This page will be updated continuously to reflect the most recent information. This page was last updated on May 20, 2021.

 The American Rescue Plan provides Illinois with $834.7 millionin new rent and utility assistance for renters and $50 million in mortgage assistance for homeowners.  Details are below.

In addition to the American Rescue Plan, you may be eligible for ongoing relief provided by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“Families First”), the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, and the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 (COVID relief law).  

Governor Pritzker Rental and Mortgage Relief Program Updates
Nearly 100,000 Illinois residents applied for housing assistance through either the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) or Emergency Mortgage Assistance (EMA) programs. The Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) continues to notify applicants via email regarding the status of their application, and appreciate your patience during these difficult times. 

IHDA has disbursed more than $325 million in emergency housing assistance to renters and homeowners impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. If you have questions about these programs, click here (en español) for a list of ERA FAQs or here (en español) for a list of EMA FAQs or email

The American Rescue Plan provides Illinois with $834.7 million in dedicated rent and utility assistance funding through the Department of Treasury’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program. This funding is in addition to the $332.6 million Illinois received in the December COVID relief law.

How to Apply
The Emergency Rental Assistance Program funds are being administered through the Illinois Housing Development Authority's Illinois Rental Payment Program (ILRPP). ILRPP is an emergency rental assistance program designed to support households in Illinois that are unable to pay rent due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Information and updates on the program can be found here. To apply, tenants and landlords will need to visit the application site here.
  • The ILRPP application is a joint application that begins with the housing provider. After the housing provider completes their section, the tenant will be contacted by email with instructions to complete their portion of the application. An application will not be considered complete until both the housing provider and the tenant complete their sections of the joint application.
  • Tenants may initiate their own application starting Wednesday, June 9 through Monday, June 28.
  • For housing providers or tenants with barriers to accessing the online application, housing support service organizations are standing by to help. Contact IHDA’s ILRPP call center at 1-866-454-3571 to be connected with an available agency.

The American Rescue Plan also included roughly $38 million for Illinois in Homeowner Assistance Fund funding for families who are behind on their mortgages or already in foreclosure as a result of the pandemic. Funds can be used to provide homeowners with assistance to cover mortgage payments, property taxes, utility payments, or other resources to help them stay in their homes.

Who is Eligible?
The program is intended to serve homeowners who have fallen behind or at risk of falling behind on their mortgage, property tax, or utility payments due to the coronavirus pandemic. Although specific eligibility criteria will be determined by the state, at least 60 percent of the funds must go to households at or below 100 percent of area median income. You can find area median income for your community here.

How to Apply
Funds will be administered through the state and information on how to apply will be available soon. You may find more information here. 

Foreclosure Moratorium And Expanded Forbearance
On February 16, 2021, the White House announced Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Department of Agriculture are implementing a coordinated extension and expansion of forbearance and foreclosure relief programs which would:

  • Extend the foreclosure moratorium for homeowners through June 30, 2021;
  • Extend the mortgage payment forbearance enrollment window until June 30, 2021 for borrowers who wish to request forbearance;
  • Provide up to six months of additional mortgage payment forbearance, in three-month increments, for borrowers who entered forbearance on or before June 30, 2020.

HUD additionally announced policies that, through the FHA:
Expanded the COVID-19 Forbearance to allow up to two forbearance extensions of up to three months each for homeowners who requested a COVID-19 Forbearance on or before June 30, 2020. These additional forbearance extensions will provide relief to homeowners in this situation who will be nearing the end of their maximum 12-month forbearance period and have not yet stabilized their financial situation.

Expanded the use of FHA’s streamlined COVID-19 loss mitigation home retention and home disposition options to all homeowners who are behind on their mortgage payments by at least 90 days. This expansion will require mortgage servicers to assess more homeowners for a streamlined waterfall of loss mitigation home retention options, starting with FHA’s COVID-19 Standalone Partial Claim.

Mortgage Payment Forbearance
The CARES Act provides relief for homeowners with government-guaranteed mortgages. 

If the coronavirus pandemic has caused job loss, income reduction, sickness, or other issues, federally held mortgages are eligible for relief. Mortgages backed by FHA, USDA, VA, HUD Sec 184, Fannie Mae, or Freddie Mac are eligible for interest and penalty free forbearance for at least 6 months and up to one year. 

  • Forbearance puts your payments on pause. You will still have to make these payments eventually; however, interest will not accrue during this coronavirus-related forbearance period.
  • Your credit will not suffer. Negative credit reporting is also suspended.

Homeowners in need of the forbearance should reach out to their mortgage servicers as soon as possible or contact a HUD-approved housing counselor. Contact information for a homeowner’s mortgage servicer can be found in monthly mortgage statements or coupon book. The nearest housing counselor can be found here or by calling (800) 569-4287.

Q:  How do I know if my mortgage is eligible for relief (or federally held)?
A:  To find out if your loan is backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, you can use the look-up tools developed by each agency:

Q:  What if my loan is not federally backed?
A:  You should still reach out to your loan servicer. Financial regulators have encouraged lenders to work with mortgage holders. You can find the nearest housing counselor here or by calling (800) 569-4287.

Foreclosure relief
Homeowners with FHA, USDA, VA, or Section 184 or 184A mortgages, or mortgages backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, who are facing foreclosure will also have relief from foreclosure or being forced to relocate as we address the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Helpful information resources