Utility, Rent and Mortgage Assistance Available in Kansas
Income-eligible residents in Johnson County can get all sorts of financial assistance to cover past due utility bills through four different types of utility assistance programs and two programs available for rental or mortgage assistance.
Johnson County Aging & Human Services administers the Johnson County Utility Assistance Program, offering low-income households financial assistance for electric, water, gas, wastewater, or propane utility bills. There are certain requirements that must be met by the applicant to be eligible. The applicant must be a Johnson County resident, with a household income at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines. Utility bills must not exceed the maximum amount of funding available. To see if you qualify and schedule an appointment, please call 913-715-6653, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday.
Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC) administers the Kansas Emergency Rental Assistance (KERA) program and provides rental and utility assistance up to 18 months of assistance to qualifying Kansas renters. KERA serves Kansans, including those residing in the city of Wichita, who have had difficulty paying or collecting rent, utility, or internet payments during the COVID pandemic. If the application is approved, the landlord or service provider receives funds directly from KERA and applies KERA funds to the applicant’s account. To be eligible, applicants must have a 2020 or 2021 household income that did not exceed 80 percent of their area’s median income. At least one member of the tenant household must have experienced financial hardship during the COVID pandemic, including loss of employment, reduction in household income, or significant COVID-related expenses (medical bills, personal protective equipment, child care costs, equipment or internet costs to enable online work/schooling, etc.). Funded by the American Rescue plan of 2021 and the federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021, this program can cover up to 18 months of current and past due household rent, up to three months of prospective household rent at a time, past-due residential utility or home energy expenses for tenants, and past due or prospective internet expenses for tenants, paid in one lump sum of $900.00. The program can also cover additional fees associated with past-due rent or utility bills that may be covered, including reasonable late fees, rental security deposits, application or screening fees, pet fees, utility fees, parking fees, garage fees, and/or legal fees. For more information, as well as applying online, visit their official site.
The Kansas Department for Children and Families is also administering two different utility assistance programs, the Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) and the Emergency Water Assistance Program (EWAP).
The Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) is a federally funded program that helps eligible households pay a portion of their home energy costs by providing a one-time per year benefit. Qualifying households must not exceed the income limit, have made recent payments of at least $80 toward their costs, and be personally responsible for the heating fuel costs payable either to the landlord, utility company, or fuel vendor. The benefit amount is based on federal funding received, anticipated number of applicants, type of dwelling, type of primary heating fuel, number of household members (citizens), and household income. For more information, call 1 800 432 0043.
The Emergency Water Assistance Program (EWAP) is a federally funded program that helps restore and prevent the disconnection of water to Kansas households. The program helps pay past due and/or disconnected drinking water and/or wastewater bills for Kansas households earning less than 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. Applications for the EWAP can be found here. Completed application and supporting materials can be sent here [email protected]. The Emergency Water Assistance Program will accept applications until the funding is spent.
Kansas Housing Resources Corporation (KHRC) administers the Kansas Homeowner Assistance Fund (KHAF). This program provides financial assistance to eligible Kansans who have had difficulty paying their mortgages, property taxes, homeowner association fees, utilities, or internet/broadband payments due to financial hardships during the COVID pandemic. These hardships may include a reduction in income, loss of employment, or significant COVID-related expenses (medical bills, personal protective equipment, child care costs, equipment or internet costs to enable online work/schooling, etc.). If the application is approved, the KHAF funds are sent and applied directly to homeowners’ accounts, helping homeowners receive aid as quickly as possible. To be eligible applicants must own their home in Kansas, provide valid proof of identification, be at risk of losing their home without assistance, and have a household income at or below 150 percent of the area’s median income. The property must be a single-family home, one-to-four unit dwelling, or mobile home. For more information, as well as applying online, visit their official site.