Illinois Housing Development Authority

Peoria officials will use a state grant to turn downtown office space in the central Illinois community into subsidized housing for the homeless.

Illinois has awarded more than $22.5 million in federal tax credits to help fund 20 new affordable housing developments.

finn / Flickr/Creative Commons

CHICAGO (AP) - A new program will help some Illinois homeowners who are underwater on their mortgages to refinance and reduce the amount of money they owe.

The Illinois Housing Development Authority announced Tuesday that Illinois will be one of two states starting a refinance program using federal funds.

 IHDA Executive Director Audra Hamernik says the help is needed because some neighborhoods haven't recovered from the 2008 housing crisis. She says the program offers "a lifeline" to struggling communities.  The program will begin Aug. 1.  To be eligible, homeowners must meet certain income requirements and owe more on their home than its market value.

After the recent economic downturn, many Illinois communities were left with a significant number of abandoned houses. Cook County alone is estimated to have 55-thousand such vacancies which drives down surrounding property values.

State officials to host housing event in Peoria

May 8, 2013

Officials with the Illinois Housing Development Authority will be in Peoria next weekend to help area residents with down payment assistance on a home and foreclosure prevention. The event aims to give residents access to various housing programs all in one place.