Chicago Housing Authority opens waitlists via online applications

Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) opened its waitlists to new applicants on Monday, October 27 – and for the first time, people can apply for three waitlist lotteries using one online registration form.

All applications must be completed online at  Applicants can apply for Housing Choice Vouchers (formerly called Section 8), family public housing and/or property rental assistance.

“People still believe that they cannot apply if they are an ex-offender, but that’s not true at all,” said Rachel Ramirez, a CCH community organizer. 

Ms. Ramirez points out that the Re-Entry Project pushed the CHA several years ago to adopt new procedures for ex-offenders. Now, if an ex-0ffender’s name is called from a waitlist, s/he can can present evidence when called in for an interview that they have turned their life around. Previously, ex-offenders had to wait until they received a denial letter, a process which discouraged most applicants from applying at all.

Applications will be accepted online by the CHA for four weeks, until Monday, November 24. Low-income households are eligible, based on income limits set by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). More information or help are available by calling the CHA at (312) 971-7700.

Meanwhile, downstate Bloomington, Illinois is accepting Housing Choice until Thursday, October 30. A national listing of housing authority deadlines is available here.

CHA is accepting online registrations in eight languages, besides English: Chinese, Polish, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, Spanish, Vietnamese, and Urdu.

– Anne Bowhay, Media