Help paying rent in Chicago

Among the responsibilities that we can describe as inescapable is the monthly rent payment. Whether you live alone, share a home with someone else, or have a dependent family, paying rent is surely among your priorities. However, if you are going through a complicated situation and it has been difficult for you to fulfill your obligation, you can request help paying rent in chicago.

It is possible that you are a very responsible person and that you are never late in paying your rent, you probably have some reserve money in order to face unforeseen events. However, it is impossible to foresee everything in life and your reserves could become insufficient when your difficulties extend over time.

A severe economic crisis could last longer than expected and the impact of an emergency situation could generate more damage than calculated. In these cases, you must be very quick to start looking for solutions before it is too late.

Keep reading: Government aid: Rent, services, health and more

Where can help be sought in an emergency?

There are different types of assistance that you can turn to, on the one hand there are government aid, and on the other, there are the programs of non-profit organizations and charity groups.

All these organizations offer different types of aid such as: assistance for the payment of overdue rent, for the first month’s rent, legal assistance in case of eviction, food, clothing, and in some cases, aid for medical services.

There are two fundamental factors that will directly influence your aid application process with these organizations or with the state. One is your personal financial situation, and the other is the availability of resources from the different assistance programs.

Before requesting help: First steps

Before starting a help request process, keep the following tips in mind:

  • If the owner or administrator sends you any notice or notification, never ignore it
  • Contact the owner or administrator of your home and explain the situation in which you find yourself.
  • Gather all the documentation related to the new situation in which you find yourself, these can be medical exams or dismissal letters, for example.
  • When you explain your problem to the landlord, show him all the documents that support the information.

Get help paying rent in Chicago through government entities

The state of Illinois offers citizens different types of assistance so they can keep their homes. There are programs to help pay the mortgage, utilities, rent, security deposits for rental contracts, among others.

The objective of these programs is, in one way or another, to prevent individuals and families from being left homeless as a result of eviction or foreclosure.

To meet its goal, the state offers the Homeless Prevention Program, through which emergency aid is offered for the payment of rents, payment of public services, mortgage loans, among others. What is really intended is to alleviate homelessness and help solve the different problems that the citizens of the state may face.

For families with low or moderate income, the DHS (Department of Homeland Security) office can help them find decent and affordable housing by assisting them in paying the first month’s rent, paying security deposits and helping them pay connection fees for basic services.

Keep reading: How to claim the second economic stimulus check?

Eligibility Process

The person or family requesting help must include all the documentation that justifies their difficult economic situation, such as the dismissal letter or medical exams, for example. The purpose of this documentation is also to demonstrate that the crisis situation was not caused by irresponsible behavior of the applicant. On the other hand, the beneficiaries must demonstrate that in a short period of time they will be able to pay their bills by themselves.

Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8)

This program is aimed at people and families with very low resources and its objective is to help them obtain decent and safe housing.

With this plan, they can apply for almost any type of single-family home, townhouse or apartment. They do not necessarily have to be part of the subsidized housing projects. The administration of this government program is carried out by the PHA (Public Housing Authority).

In order to receive the help, the homeowner must also agree to the conditions of the program. The payment of the assistance is made by the PHA directly to the owner of the house, in case it is not enough to cover the total rent, the tenant must pay the difference.

How do you know if you are eligible for the Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8)?

The two main factors that determine your eligibility are low income and the real need for decent housing in acceptable health conditions.

The analysis of the family income is carried out based on the gross annual income in relation to the number of members of the family. The family income must not exceed 50% of the median income of the area in which you live and in case your income does not exceed 30%, the PHA establishes that you can receive up to 75% of the required amount.

To find out the average amount of income for the area in which you live, check the hud page, where these data are regularly published.

Regarding the legal situation that you must have to obtain this aid, it is established that only US citizens and foreigners with certain immigration statuses can request assistance.

After completing the application process, The PHA must confirm the information you have provided regarding family assets and income. For this, you may have to contact your employer, the banks or whoever you consider necessary. This process not only determines if you can receive the aid but also the amount that can be awarded to you.

If you want more information about this plan, do click this link or you can also call the number 1-800-955-2232, Monday through Friday.

Get help paying rent in Chicago through charities and charity programs

Apart from government entities, there are non-profit organizations such as churches, the Salvation Army and Catholic Caritas, among many others. These offer different types of assistance, among which you will find help paying rent in chicagoObviously this will always depend on the availability of resources of these organizations.

Deciding who is entitled to receive the aid is the exclusive power of the organization that offers it, therefore, even if you feel that you are in a very difficult situation, it may be that the organization gives preference to another person.

Typically, many apply for help and funds are limited. Therefore, families with young children and those in extremely difficult financial circumstances are given priority.

Remember that even if you meet the eligibility criteria, you may not receive aid because resources are quite limited. In this case, you may be referred to other organizations that can help you.

catholic caritas

Caritas of the Catholic Church is a network of churches and social services. This organization offers help to anyone regardless of religion, race, gender or age. It is focused on reducing poverty and strengthening the family.


Although you may not have thought of churches as an option to help pay your rent in Chicago, do not lose sight of it. The churches, in addition to providing help with clothing, utility bills, heating and food, They can also offer help with the payment of rent, depending on the case and the budget they have.

Go to the nearest church and explain your situation, preferably bring the supporting documents you have. Currently, many churches are maintaining some budget to help with rent payments.

Community Action Organizations

These non-profit organizations offer help with both rent and heating and utility bills, They also offer personal training programs. They can usually direct you to get government aid

Salvation Army

This is an organization formed by a group of churches that are spread throughout the country and united by the same goal “faith”. It offers help to anyone regardless of their beliefs or their origin. Assistance options include help paying rent in Chicago, help covering utility bills, clothing, food, Christmas gifts, etc. It currently serves immigrants, the elderly and the disabled in different ways through the churches that make up the network.

Association LOVE INC

The LOVE INC association brings together a large number of churches and ministries. LOVE INC works hard helping people in difficult situations, in some cases the association coordinates the allocation of shelters to people in need. Additionally, they have rental assistance programs.

Help Paying Rent in Chicago: Important Considerations

The plans and aid offered by the different associations and churches vary according to the locality in which you are and the regulations of each one of them. For this reason, The first thing you should do is first find out about the aid plans that are offered in your state and county.

Keep in mind that people with financial emergencies, the disabled, families with children, and the elderly will always have priority for help. As funds are limited, these organizations review each case very well before allocating aid.

The guidelines established by each organization regarding the allocation of resources are very strict. So no matter how desperate your situation may seem to you, you must understand that Even if you go through the application process for a program that offers rent assistance in Chicago, you may not receive it.

Also remember that the aid offered by these organizations is designed for the short term, that is, they are designed to offer assistance at a time of specific crisis. It is very important that you can demonstrate that you have the ability to improve your financial situation as quickly as possible. These plans, in general, are oriented to temporary situations.

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