Property Rental Assistance (PRA)
Effective July 2019, the Chicago Housing Authority opened its competitive application process for the Property Rental Assistance (PRA) program. Through PRA, Project Based Vouchers (PBV) are allocated to create affordable housing opportunities. The following documents and resources are available for property owners and developers:
- PRA Application Overview provides guidance to CHA priorities, the PRA application, as well as the PRA evaluation process.
- PRA Application provides the framework and required documents to be submitted to the Chicago Housing Authority.
- CHA Opportunity Area & Gautreaux Status Map
CHA staff are available to discuss potential PRA applications and can be reached at DevelopmentFinancing@thecha.org or 312-786-4072
PROPERTY RENTAL ASSISTANCE (PRA) PROGRAM
The Chicago Housing Authority's (CHA) Property Rental Assistance (PRA) program works to increase high-quality, affordable housing opportunities in healthy and revitalizing neighborhoods throughout the City of Chicago.
Through an allocation of Project Based Vouchers (PBV), the PRA program creates a long-term housing opportunity for a given number of units in a residential property with a 15 to 30-year Housing Assistance Payments contract. New construction, substantial rehabilitation, and existing multi-unit buildings qualify for application to the PRA program.
Please Note: If you are applying to be a tenant in a PRA unit, you must apply through the CHA Wait List portal. Applicants for an assisted rental unit select “Apply for Housing” and can select one Public Housing site-based wait list and one PBV site based wait list. PRA properties are located on the PBV wait list.
Who Can Apply:
- Owners of existing well-managed multi-unit rental buildings or portfolios
- Developers of multi-unit rental buildings or portfolios
When to Apply:
- Applications are being accepted now and throughout the year on a rolling basis
- Applications for a Preliminary Commitment Letter for a government financing rounds will be announced.
CHA is accepting applications for Preliminary Commitment Letters for the following government financing rounds through Monday, October 14, 2019. Digital applications must be received by 4pm: DevelopmentFinancing@thecha.org
- IHDA 2020-21 government financing round
- City of Chicago 2020-21 government financing round
- IHDA Permanent Supportive Housing 2020-21 government financing round
CHA staff are available to discuss potential PRA applications and can be reached at DevelopmentFinancing@thecha.org or 312-786-4072.
Property Rental Assistance FAQs
CHA determines the contract rent by accepting the lowest of the following amounts:
- Up to 110% of the Fair Market Rent (FMR) for the applicable bedroom size in the community area in which the property is located (or 150% FMR in Mobility Areas);
- Average market comparables in the immediate area; or
- The owner requested amount.
The following outreach steps must be taken fill a vacant PRA unit:
- Submit a Vacancy Report Form to CHA within ten (10) days of the unit becoming vacant. After receiving the Vacancy Report Form, CHA will send your property manager names from the CHA wait list.
- The Property Manager will complete a minimum of three (3) outreach attempts, via email, phone (all numbers listed), and mail for each applicant. The Property Manager will send the corresponding outcome letters to CHA once completed, detailing the outcome of the attempts.
- The Property Manager will screen each Applicant based on the building’s Tenant Selection Plan and notify CHA of the Applicant(s) that meets the building’s screening criteria. CHA will schedule an Intake Interview with the Applicant to determine if they meet the rental subsidy assistance requirements. If deemed eligible, a PRA Tenancy Addendum will be forwarded to the Property Manager. Once the required Housing Quality Standards (HQS) inspection is passed, the Property Manager will sign a Lease Agreement with the Applicant.
CHA requires that all units meet HUD’s Housing Quality Standards (HQS). Annually, CHA will inspect a minimum of 20% of the units that participate under the PRA Housing Assistance Payments contract. If 20% or more of the inspected units fail inspection, CHA may inspect all (100%) of the PRA units in the building. Through CHA’s Owner’s Portal, property managers are able to see the inspection report and make repairs prior to reinspection.
Owners receive monthly PRA HAP payments via direct deposit. An electronic invoice is then forwarded each month detailing the payment breakdown. CHA offers an “Owner’s Portal” that provides detailed information about the payments.
Property Owners are able to submit a request for a rent increase annually. The PRA Rent Increase Form must be received by CHA at least 60 days prior to the HAP contract anniversary date. Approval of a rent increase is based upon determining the lowest of:
- Fair Market Rent (FMR) for the applicable bedroom size in the community area,
- Average market comparables in the immediate area, or
- The Property owner’s requested amount.
If approved, the rent increase will be effective on the HAP anniversary date for all units under the PRA HAP contract.