Social Programs

South Dakota Housing Development Authority and partner agencies are working to assist South Dakotans who have been impacted by COVID-19 and the related economic crisis by offering financial assistance to help stabilize their housing situation. The funding is provided to South Dakota through the American Rescue Plan.

If you are unable to pay mortgage, property insurance on your home, or utilities because of the pandemic, short-term financial assistance may be available.

General Questions - Homeowner

To be eligible, a household must:

  • Be a South Dakota resident.
  • Legally reside in the United States.
  • Be financially impacted by the COVID 19 pandemic. 
  • Have current household income that does not exceed 100% Area Median Income (AMI) for homeowners, as outlined on the "Homeowner Income Guidelines".
  • Owe past due mortgage, insurance or utilities (i.e. water, sewer, electricity, propane/natural gas, trash).

Yes. If you first received assistance in 2020. This is a new program with new funding so you will need to submit a new application.

If you have received assistance in 2021, please do not submit another application for additional assistance. Instead, please refer to your tokenized email and contact the agency processing your 2021 application and they will assist you with requesting additional financial assistance.

Yes. You must demonstrate negative economic or financial hardship due directly or indirectly to the coronavirus outbreak.

Applicants seeking mortgage assistance will be required to work with their mortgage servicer to determine if there are alternative options through the servicer to remedy the delinquency. In many cases, the mortgage servicer has more flexible options that are better for the homeowner than SD Cares Housing Assistance loan program.

Partner agencies across South Dakota are available to help households complete an application and provide financial assistance. Once determined eligible, you will be asked to complete the full application and will be expected to submit required documentation before assistance is provided.

SDHDA is partnering with the following agencies to assist households, process applications and disburse financial assistance. The application can be completed on-line and can be found on the following websites.

Grow South Dakota - Sisseton

Lutheran Social Services - Sioux Falls

Rural Office of Community Services, Inc. - Wagner

Helpline Center - Statewide

Yes, the mortgage assistance, including property taxes and insurance, is set up as a loan program. It is 0% interest, zero payments due and must be repaid when the property is sold, refinanced, transferred or is no longer the primary residence. The utility assistance is a grant and does not need to be repaid.

Yes, you can access and complete the application via your smartphone and upload pictures of the required documentation.

You will receive an email indicating that your application has been received. This tokenized email will be your access to your application so it is very important that you do not lose this email. You will use this tokenized email to log back into the application to check your applications status, upload additional documents if necessary, exchange messages with your case worker and potentially apply for additional funding.

Upon submission, your application will be assigned to one of the partner agencies and they will be in contact with you for any additional documents or information that may be necessary.

Yes. Assistance is not guaranteed. The most common reasons for denial include:

  • Applicant does not meet program eligibility requirements
  • Applicant is unlikely to be able to afford their house payment going forward
  • The financial assistance is unlikely to prevent foreclosure
  • The applicant’s delinquency began prior to the pandemic

If you are unable to find your tokenized email you will need to contact any agency assisting with SD Cares. The agency will be able to resend your email.

Yes, all unemployment benefits, including any pandemic unemployment assistance for COVID-19, should be included as income.

Housing statuses eligible for assistance include being at risk of losing your home or whose forbearance is about to expire.

Households that are literally homeless without a nighttime residence are not eligible. Households in such a circumstance should seek alternative resources such as Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) funding or by contacting 211 Helpline Center.

Assistance can be provided in all South Dakota counties.

Applications can be submitted electronically. If you need assistance in applying, simply call 211 and they will assist you with the process.

Upon review of your application, staff will ask you to supply any additional documentation that is needed. The partner agencies, local public housing authorities, utility companies, libraries, your landlord, churches, and local government offices may be able to assist you with scanning and submitting documentation via email. All documents must include the applicant’s name.

Maybe. This program is a loan program and is intended for households that can resume their monthly mortgage payments. Homeowners unable to make their mortgage payments going forward should contact their mortgage servicer to determine if more suitable options are available.

The amount of assistance received by each household will be based on each household’s circumstance, but the maximum amount of mortgage assistance available is $25,000 and/or up to $300 per month in utility assistance with a maximum of $5,000 total.

No, we cannot use the funds for reimbursement. The payment must be made for an amount actually owed.

No, household stimulus checks are not included in calculation of income.

In order to be eligible for assistance, applicants must have a past due amount for mortgage, property taxes, insurance, or utilities. Homeowners with concerns about making an upcoming mortgage payment should reach out to their mortgage service provider as better options may be available.

No. Application review and processing may take 30 days. Applicant will be notified upon payment approval and issuance. Payments may take an additional 10-15 days to arrive.

Payments will be sent via check directly to the mortgage servicers and/or utility providers. Payment should arrive within 10-15 days after notification of an approved application.

All applicants must be accessible by either phone or email. You may provide a release of information to authorize communication with a representative of yours that has an active phone number or email.

Applicants will be asked to supply a photo ID, documentation of household income such as a tax return, paystubs, or Social Security benefit letter, proof of mortgage or utilities due and, if approved, a mortgage and promissory note.

You can submit an application without attaching all the required documentation. However, this will most likely lengthen the application review process. Applicants will be contacted to request missing information or documentation.

A letter from your previous employer is the preferred documentation. In its absence, you can supply other documentation you believe demonstrates your loss of income. In the absence of proof of income or loss of income, you will be required to sign the Zero-Loss of Income Certification.

This is requested by the Federal Government to ensure our compliance with equal credit opportunity, fair housing and home mortgage disclosure laws. You are not required to furnish this information, but are encouraged to do. For race, you may check more than one designation. If you do not wish to furnish the information, please check the appropriate box.

Yes. SDCHAP can be used to help you catch up on unpaid utility bills, up to the $300 monthly limit.

Yes. Assistance can cover non-excessive late fees that were incurred January 21, 2020, or later.

No. SDHDA and the partner agencies do not act as an intermediary between homeowners or utility providers. Consider contacting the State Bar of South Dakota for legal assistance.

Yes. Households will only complete one application for all assistance requested.

No, not from Homeowner Assistance funds, however payment for lot rent for manufactured homes may be considered for the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program. A lot rental verification or copy of the rental agreement is required prior to any payment being made.

Yes, if the home is the applicant’s primary residence, assistance can be provided with submission of the appropriate documentation.

No. Where the property owners of record are not the applicants, Homeowner Assistance funds cannot be used. Contract for deed payments may be considered for the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program.


If you are currently in a forbearance program, that has not expired, there is no risk of foreclosure so you would not be eligible to apply.

However, if the forbearance period has expired or will soon expire and you have been denied COVID-19 loss mitigation assistance to resolve the amount you were delinquent when the forbearance period expired, then yes you would be eligible to apply for assistance.

You are encouraged to contact your servicing agent to determine when your forbearance period ends, discuss how to resolve the delinquent payments at the end of the forbearance period and discuss whether you would qualify for a COVID-19 loss mitigation option.

Yes, SDCHAP funding can be used for principal, interest, taxes and insurances (PITI) and homeowners association fees, if applicable. Assistance may also be provided for utilities and internet expenses.

No. Because there is not an ownership interest in the unit, you are not eligible. Rent payments such as rent-to-own and mobile home lot rent, may be eligible through the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program.