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Financial relief available for Idahoans behind on rent and utility payments

The Housing Preservation Program was allocated $5 million dollars from the Coronavirus Relief Fund to help those struggling to make ends meet.

BOISE, Idaho — If you live in Idaho and are having trouble paying your rent or utility bills, Idaho Housing and Finance Association’s Housing Preservation Program is designed to help you through the pandemic. 

“When the pandemic hit and we saw businesses closing we knew instantly there was additional needs for rental assistance,” said Brady Ellis, Vice President of Housing Support Programs with Idaho Housing and Finance Association.

IHFA started the fund with a $250 thousand dollar investment in April.

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Since then, Gov. Brad Little and the Coronavirus Financial Advisory Committee allocated $5 million dollars from the coronavirus relief fund, but there’s more money available if needed.

“The approval of the state committee was up to $15 million,” Ellis said. “Those can be approved in $5 million increments, so if we expend the first $5 million, we can expend the second $5 million and so on.”

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To be eligible for the program, you must currently owe rent or utility bills, or be unable to pay upcoming bills.

Your income must also be lower than 80% of your county’s median income for rental assistance. You can check where your income stands here.

After you apply, expect to wait three to seven days to hear back.

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Payments will be made directly to landlords and utility companies, and could take seven to 10 days to arrive.

Idaho residents who meet the criteria can apply for rental assistance at Idaho Housing and Finance Association’s website.

At KTVB, we’re focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the virus. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: www.ktvb.com/coronavirus.

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