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Aftercare Rent Subsidy Program

Helping with the Transition

You don’t have to gain independence all on your own. The Aftercare Rent Subsidy Program supports youth who are aging out of foster care and are participating in the Aftercare Services Program. The subsidy promotes self-sufficiency goals and teaches youth life skills relative to renter rights and responsibilities.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Aftercare Services Participant.

    The youth must be an active participant in aftercare services, making progress toward an identified goal of obtaining or maintaining stable housing. The youth must have left foster care on or after his/her 18th birthday.

  • Demonstrated Need.

    The youth must provide evidence that he/she is responsible for paying more than 30% of their gross earned and unearned income for rent.

    That they cannot obtain other rental assistance because they have been determined ineligible or are on a waiting list for rent subsidy under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or any other available rent subsidy program, or because a waiting list for the HUD rent subsidy program or any other rent subsidy program is closed.

    This program may not be used to substitute for any other subsidy that the youth had been receiving at the time of or immediately prior to the time of application to this program.

    Youth receiving rental assistance at the time of or immediately prior to the time of application to this program shall not be eligible.

  • Education on Renter Rights and Responsibilities.

    To demonstrate that the youth understands the rights and responsibilities of being a renter, the youth must have either lived in a transitional apartment (through the Aftercare Services Transitional Apartment program), completed a renter education and awareness program, be enrolled to participate or be currently participating in a renter education and awareness program.

  • Budget.

    The youth must submit a budget that demonstrates that the subsidy, when combined with their gross earned and unearned income, will enable them to cover all remaining living expenses (i.e., housing, utilities, clothing and food).

  • Lease.

    The youth must submit a current lease agreement between the youth and the landlord. The lease must state the rental address, monthly rent, terms of lease and the effective date of the agreement.

Application Process

The self-sufficiency advocate must submit an online application to the Iowa Finance Authority on behalf of eligible youth.

The following should be sent via email:

Amount of Rent Subsidy

The subsidy amount is the difference, not to exceed $450, between:

  • The lesser of the actual rent or fair market rent under guidelines of the applicable HUD low-rent housing program in the county where the youth’s residence is located, and
  • Thirty percent of the youth’s monthly gross earned and unearned income.

Determining Amount of Rent Subsidy

Start with: Whichever is less; actual rent OR Fair Market Rent

Divide by: Number of bedrooms
(One bedroom or proportionate share of a rental unit with more than one bedroom)

This equals: Allowable rent/number of bedrooms
The proportionate rent allowed for a single person

Multiply by: Proportionate rent x (applicant + dependents)
The applicant and minor dependents, if any

This equals: The adjusted proportionate rent allowed

Subtract: Gross monthly income x 30%
30% of the applicant’s monthly income (contribution towards rent)

Whichever is less; rent less the monthly rent subsidy

Remainder:  Income OR $450

  • As long as funds remain and eligibility requirements of this chapter continue to be met, the organization will receive an ongoing monthly payment on behalf of the youth approved for rent subsidy.
  • Assistance must be used for rental expense directly related to the youth’s lease of a rental unit.
  • The monthly payment must be for a rental unit with one bedroom or a proportionate share of rental costs in units containing more than one bedroom. An exception for additional bedrooms will be made for minor dependents residing in the rental unit.

Waiting List and Insufficient Funds

  • If funds are not sufficient to cover payments for all youth on the subsidy, youth shall be terminated from the subsidy in the inverse order in which they began receiving payments.
  • The youth terminated shall move back to the waiting list with the original application date dictating the youth’s position on the waiting list.
  • Youth not awarded funding but meeting the eligibility requirements will be placed on a statewide waiting list according to the order in which the completed applications were received.
  • In the event that more than one application is received at one time, the youth shall be entered on the waiting list on the basis of the day of the youth’s birthday, the lowest number being first on the waiting list. Any subsequent tie shall be decided by the month of birth, with January being month one.

Redetermination of Eligibility

A redetermination of eligibility for direct rent subsidy payments shall be completed: At least once every 12 months

  • When a change in circumstances occurs that affects eligibility requirements
  • If the youth moves from the rental unit stated on the application
  • When there is a change in income of $40 per month
  • When there is a change in the names of the people on the lease or number of minor dependents
  • When there is an unapproved person residing in the rental unit
  • If the youth fails to complete the renter education and awareness program within the time period stated in the application

Termination of Rent Subsidy

The rent subsidy will terminate at the end of the month in which any of the following occurs, and a notice will be sent to the self-sufficiency advocate which states the reason for termination:

  • The youth does not meet one or more of the eligibility criteria
  • The youth does not meet the youth’s obligations and personal responsibility as a renter, as determined by the youth’s self-sufficiency advocate
  • No additional uncommitted funds are available for the rent subsidy program

 

For inquiries about aftercare rent subsidies reach out to:

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