SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Pritzker administration announced the opening of the Illinois Homeowner Assistance Fund (ILHAF) on Monday.

The fund, which totals $309 million, is designed to help struggling homeowners who have fallen behind on monthly mortgage payments or related housing expenses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Homeowners will be eligible for up to $30,000 in free assistance to pay past due mortgage payments, property taxes, property insurance, and delinquent homeowner or condo association fees.

“Housing stability is a crucial part of our economic recovery, and I’m pleased to announce that Illinois residents can now apply for $30,000 in mortgage support,” said Governor JB Pritzker.

To qualify, homeowners must have experienced a financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, such as lost income or increased expenses, on or after Jan. 21, 2020. They must also currently own and occupy their Illinois home as their primary residence, be at least 30 days behind on their mortgage or other homeowner expenses and have a household income at or below 150% of the Area Median Income.

Homeowners in communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the health and economic effects of the pandemic will be prioritized in the distribution of assistance.

Homeowners in need of assistance can find more information on program eligibility and begin an application at www.illinoishousinghelp.org.

Applications will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, May 31.