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Rental assistance Des Moines and Polk County

Find help with paying back rent, security deposits or housing vouchers in the Des Moines region. Charities, including churches, partner with the government and non-profit agencies in an effort to stop homelessness across Polk County Iowa. There may be federal grants as well as direct financial aid from a charity that can be used to help pay for a portion of rent or security deposit that is due. Other agencies may provide free motel or hotel vouchers as well as legal help to tenants to stop an eviction.

An application process is in place for immediate, emergency rental assistance, with a priority for vulnerable residents. This means that any funds for assisting with back rent, moving costs or other housing expenses will prioritize families with children, the disabled, single moms or seniors in Polk County. In addition, a focus will be on helping applicants that have some source of income. In general, any financial aid paid out will only be for a portion of the rental or utility arrears that is due. Read more on churches that offer rental assistance.

Cross Ministries offers homeless prevention services. The address is 3226 University Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50311. can help with all types of housing. The rental assistance will be issued as well as case management. In addition, the agency will also assist with both security as well as utility deposits for those from Polk County that qualify.

Vouchers as well as loans are used for paying a portion of rent, energy bills, or even a mortgage. The charity is a crisis ministry that offers outreach to the working poor in a crisis. The homeless can have a a rent deposit or moving costs paid. Telephone - (515) 279-9998.

Des Moines Housing Services Department has the Family Unification Program (DMMHA) as well as section 8 HUD vouchers, including emergency ones. This non-profit will only help residents of Polk County that may have their family unit dissolved without aid. Funds for rent and information on section 8 vouchers and public housing is arranged.

The location also serves as the Des Moines Public Housing Authority. They focus on city residents. Home buying programs, Section 8 HUD vouchers, low income public housing, shelters, and rent subsidized homes. Many clients are poor, seniors, single moms, or disabled, ans they often qualify for apartments that charge rent based on income. The location is 2309 Euclid Ave, Des Moines, IA 50310. For information on vouchers, call (515) 323-8950.




Central Iowa Regional Housing Authority (CIRHA) provides section 8 vouchers and public housing in Grimes. There is family self-sufficiency, home buying resources, public housing and other aid from 1201 SE Gateway Drive, Grimes, Iowa 50111. For information, dial (515) 986-1882.

General Assistance, or GA in Polk County, is short term relief. Housing and other services are run from Polk County River Place, Des Moines, IA 50310. The government can issue a loan for furniture, appliances or housing needs, such as rent or taxes. There is also traveler aid or grants to pay first months rent on an affordable home or apartment. Call the county at (515) 286-2088.

Iowa Finance Authority can only provide financial aid, including for rent, for qualified low income families who get benefits, such as SNAP or Medicaid. The address is 1963 Bell Ave, Des Moines, IA 50315. Emergency funds, grants, housing, and even referrals to utility bill help such as LIHEAP are offered (if it could lead to an eviction). Polk County residents with Medicaid waivers can call the government agency at (515) 452-0400 for rental assistance.

Polk County Commission of Veterans Affairs is only for veterans, their survivors and military members. Emergency utility or rent assistance as well as applications to VA benefits are available on site. They also assist disabled veterans, including offering them transitional housing. Phone - (515) 286-3670 and the non-profit is at 2309 Euclid Ave, Des Moines, IA 50310.

Primary Health Care Homeless Support Services also assists veterans with housing needs. There is mortgage or rent help, grants to pay for storage costs, transportation and more. The programs is from Supportive Services for Veteran Families, or SSVF. Call (515) 248-1850 or (515) 248-1531. There may be homeless shelters for veterans with a place to go as well free motel vouchers from 1200 University Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50314.

Proteus Inc of Des Moines office is based at Englewood Center, Des Moines, IA 50309. They help migrant and immigrant workers, including around housing, food and more. Emergency rent help and advice may be issued. Call (515) 271-5306 or (800) 372-6031.





IMPACT Community Action Partnership has multiple offices in Polk County, as noted below. The non-profit help struggling renters, homeowners, and low-income families. There are applications to grants (for back rent, mortgage or utility payments), job programs, information on landlord-tenant mediation and other social services.

  • 500 Army Post Road, Des Moines, Iowa 50315. Dial 515-274-9496
  • West Des Moines Human Services is another non-profit located at 139 6th Street West Des Moines, IA 50265. Main number is  515-222-3660
  • Red Rock Area Community Action is part of Impact too. Location is 2701 SE Convenience Blvd, Ankeny, IA 50021. Call (515) 965-0433. Both grants for back rent and eviction counseling is arranged. There are federal government ESG grants, loans for paying a rent or mortgage payment, job resources, and other housing solutions for Polk County. More on rent help from Red Rock community action.

Salvation Army Family Services is located at 400 NW 100th St, Clive, IA 50325. Dial 515-282-3599. Note appointments are needed. Housing programs include a cold winter shelter, money for security deposits, or a portion of rent. Case managers will also try to provide furniture for the new apartment, or help people apply for HUD section 8 or find hotel vouchers.

Polk County eviction prevention and rehousing programs involve the disbursement of government grants for paying rent along with motel vouchers or legal aid. Non-profits help the low income, single moms, and the elderly with their rent and other housing needs, including moving costs. More on eviction help in Polk County.

Des Moines - St. Vincent De Paul Society - General relief is for clients, regardless of religion. Immigrants are also supported with their housing needs. One time, emergency rent help is combined with heating assistance and more. Location of the parish is 1426 Sixth Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa 50314-2801. For information on resources, call (515) 282-8327.

Residents of Southeast Polk Community School District can call upon Central Place Family Resource & Community Education Center at 6540 NE 12th Avenue, Pleasant Hill, Iowa 50327. Phone: 515-266-6795. Emergency rental assistance, loans, school supplies, and educational services. They work to stop homelessness of children, students, single moms, and low income families. Financial aid for rent or utilities is one program.

Iowa Legal Aid address is 317 7th Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401. Attorneys provide tips on stopping an eviction. Or get help in applying for public housing, free legal aid to solve discrimination, and other support. There is free eviction defense for low-income and elderly renters as well, as resources allow.

West Des Moines Human Services - Homeless prevention and rapid rehousing can assist with everything from rent due to a landlord to deposits and application fees. Or get referrals to low income apartments in Polk County. Address is 139 Sixth Street, West Des Moines, Iowa 50265. Call (515) 222-3660, or find more details on cash assistance in Iowa.

USDA Rural Development of Des Moines supports farmer, migrant workers, and rural parts of the region. Housing, employment, government grants, loans and more may be issued from 210 Walnut Street, Des Moines, IA 50309. Main number is (515) 284-4663.

Indianola First United Methodist Church only supports individuals or families in the Indianola area. Emergency rental, water, or utility bill help may be offered to prevent evictions from 307 West Ashland Avenue, Indianola, IA 50125. Dial (515) 961-5317.





Aging Resources of Central Iowa supports Polk County. Call (515) 255-1310. Rent, mortgage, and even property tax help may be offered to senior citizens. The non-profit also has applications to the UnMet Needs Program. Whether grants for arrears on rent, housing repairs, or something else, financial aid may be provided. Main non-profit is at 5835 Grand Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa 50312.

Eddie Davis Community Center may have limited funding for rent payments. The agency is at 1312 Maple St., West Des Moines, Iowa 50265. Call (515) 277-1103

Catholic Charities also helps with basic needs. A few dollars for back rent, free furniture for low-income tenants, food and other services may be issued by the church at 1815 Hubbell Ave, Des Moines, IA 50316. There is also legal aid and immigration services from (515) 262-7290

By Jon McNamara

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