Rental Criteria

CHAD is committed to Equal Housing Opportunity for all applicants and we comply with  Federal, State and local fair housing laws. CHAD does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including sexual harassment), national origin, ancestry, age, order of protection status, marital status, sexual orientation (including gender-related identity), mental or physical disability, familial status, source of income, pregnancy, military status, immigration status and arrest records or unfavorable discharge from military service. To be eligible to live in CHAD housing, all applicants must meet income and other admissions criteria based on the funding restrictions for certain rental properties as well as CHAD’s additional criteria. Please visit our website for more details on CHAD’s selection criteria.


1.     Any application approval is strictly conditional and revocable until the parties execute a binding lease (“Lease Execution”). CHAD reserves the right to revoke its granting of conditional approval of your application should any reason to deny a rental application be brought to CHAD’s attention after conditional approval and prior to Lease Execution. By submitting a rental application, you expressly acknowledge and agree that if CHAD grants conditional approval of your rental application that the conditional approval is fully revocable as set forth herein.

2.     Results of criminal background reports which show applicant has been convicted of criminal conduct can be disputed. The Criminal History section of this application details CHAD’s Conviction Dispute Procedure.

3.     Click here to visit Cook County Commission on Human Rights’ website. The Commission’s information is below:

 Phone number:            312-603-1100


Address:                       69 W. Washington Street, Suite 1130, Chicago, Illinois 60602


CHAD requires each member of an applicant household who is 18 years of age or older to provide documentation to verify their income for three (3) consecutive months prior to the application date.

All members of the applicant household who are 18 years or older must be a leaseholder. CHAD accepts any legal source of household income and examples are listed below.



Wages, Salaries, Commissions, Tips, Bonuses, Over Time

  •      Ninety (90) days of current consecutive paystubs.
  •      If self-employed, see business income below.

Business Income (if you are self-employed)

  •      Copy of CPA prepared financial statements, consisting of a Profit & Loss statement and Balance Sheet for the business.
  •      1099 Tax Form for self-employed. 

Interest and Dividends

  •      Last 3 months of bank savings passbook or statements showing interest.
  •      Copy of Certificate of Deposit reflecting interest amount
  •      Dividend statement from bond holder or stock company

Social Security/Pension/

Insurance / Annuity Income

  •      Copy of current year Benefit Award Letter or Proof of Income Letter signed and dated by the agency that states the amount, frequency and duration of the benefit

Disability Income

  •      Copy of current year Social Security disability benefits statement that states the amount, frequency and duration of the benefit.

Welfare Assistance

  •      Copy of TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) award letter signed by the agency.

Alimony/Child Support

  •      If Court Ordered: Copy of Divorce or other court decree that            states the amount and period of time which it will be received.
  •         If not Court Ordered: Three (3) mos. Of Bank statements showing receipt of such payment and copies of most three (3) mos. Of recent checks.
  •         Child Support Disbursement statement

Housing Choice Voucher 

  •      Copy of the Housing Choice Voucher Move-In Packet and the Voucher Sheet. 
  •      Please note: If HCV voucher is expiring in less than 30 days, the application process may exceed the timeframe. If this occurs your rental application may be cancelled due to the voucher expiring.

 VA Benefits

  •      Copy of Benefit Award Letter or Proof of Income Letter signed and dated by the agency that states the amount, frequency and duration of the benefit.

Any other Legal source of income

  •      Documentation to show proof of same



Applicants are responsible for providing information containing the names, addresses and telephone numbers of landlords with dates of tenancy for the previous two years. Rental history must be verified from unbiased sources (no family member or relative). Recent military veterans may have the residential rental history requirement waived with proof of military service.

Rental History will be reviewed for the following:

  • Positive references from previous landlords indicating no prior evictions for any reason over the past three (3) years unless applicant household will be receiving full assistance for payment of their rent obligations and submit verifiable proof of same with their application. In such situations, previous landlord references must indicate no evictions for reasons other than non-payment. Landlord references must reflect a willingness to rent to the applicant again.
  •  No outstanding debt owed to any landlord and good payment history. This does not apply to applicant households that will be receiving full assistance for payment of their rent obligations and submit verifiable proof of same with their application. No current notices of termination of tenancy for cause.
  •  No current notices of termination of tenancy for non-payment except for those applicant households that will be receiving full assistance for payment of rent obligations and submit verifiable proof of same with their application.

 If you have ever been evicted for any reason other than non-payment of rent, are in the process of being evicted for any reason other than non-payment of rent and/or sued for any lease violation other than non-payment, we may reject your application.

Except for those applicant households that will be receiving full assistance for payment of rent obligations and submits verifiable proof of same with their application, if you have a poor rental payment history, have ever been evicted for non-payment of rent, are in the process of being evicted for non-payment of rent and/or sued for non-payment of rent, we may reject your application.


In general, an applicant’s credit record should be satisfactory. To determine satisfactory creditworthiness, CHAD will obtain a credit report from a Third-Party Vendor. Credit History will be reviewed for the following:

  •  Except for those applicant households that will be receiving full assistance for payment of rent obligations and submit verifiable proof of same with their application.
  •  Bankruptcy: Any bankruptcy must be discharged. Applicants will need to provide a copy of bankruptcy court discharge papers as part of the application process. Payment history: Credit card or loan payments showing occasional late payments of no more than 30-59 days may be acceptable, provided the applicant can justify the circumstances Payments more than 60 days or more in the last 24 months may be cause for denial of the application. Outstanding debt or judgments owed to any landlord: Any outstanding debt to a landlord or property management company will result in denial of the application Collection Activity: Medical collections will be disregarded. No outstanding utility collection debt will be accepted.

  • Collection activity under $10,000 within the last two (2) years will not automatically result in the denial of the application. However, CHAD will require additional funds for the security deposit, depending on the amount of the collection activity.
  • For applicants whose collection activity is due to a mortgage default or foreclosure, CHAD will allow collections to exceed $10,000.
  • Student loan default may or may not be considered, depending on individual circumstances. 

Unpaid Collections

Amount of Security Deposit

Less than $1,000

1 month’s Rent


1.5 months’ Rent


2 months’ Rent

>$10,000 (foreclosure only)

2 months’ Rent


If applicant(s) meet(s) all financial qualifications and background credit checks, as necessary, then CHAD will conduct a criminal background check from a Third Party Vendor on all applicants as part of the application process. Criminal convictions may disqualify an applicant

CHAD will exclude applicants for a criminal conviction (“Criminal Conviction”) as follows:

  • The conviction is less than three (3) years old*.
  • The conduct shows a demonstrable risk to others’ safety and/or property.
  • Doing so will serve a substantial, legitimate and non-discriminatory interest.
  • However, before outright rejecting an applicant based upon a Criminal Conviction, CHAD will conduct an individualized assessment by affording the applicant an opportunity to correct inaccuracies or explain extenuating circumstances and by reviewing and/or considering:
  • the age of the applicant at the time of the conduct;
  • the nature & severity of the conduct;
  • the amount of time that has passed since the conduct occurred.
  • relevant mitigating information beyond that in the Criminal Conviction;
  • the applicant’s rental history before and/or after the Criminal Conviction; and
  • evidence of rehabilitation efforts.

 *Exceptions to the Three-Year Criminal Conviction Rule:

  •  Applicant or a household member is a current sex offender required to register under the Sex Offender Registration Act (or similar law in another jurisdiction) and no individualized assessment required;
  •  The applicant or household member is a current child sex offender under residency restriction and no individualized assessment required; or

 The applicant or household member has a criminal conviction from the past 3 years where the landlord has performed an individualized assessment and can show a denial of the application is based upon the criminal conviction is necessary to protect against a demonstrable risk to personal safety and/or property.

 Criminal Conviction Dispute Procedure: Applicants have the right to dispute any inaccuracies relevant to criminal history and to provide evidence of rehabilitation and other mitigating factors related to their criminal background. Below is CHAD’s conviction dispute procedure:

  •  CHAD will deliver to the applicant via personal delivery, certified mail, text or email a copy of the results of the criminal background check within five (5) business days of CHAD receiving the report.
  •  Upon receipt of the report, the applicant has five (5) business days to dispute the accuracy or relevance of the information related to the criminal background check.
  •  Within three (3) business days of receipt of the evidence, CHAD will provide a written decision to applicant if their application is approved or denied. If CHAD issues a denial, CHAD will include an explanation detailing why denial was necessary to protect against a demonstrable risk of harm to others’ personal safety and/or property.


Applications can also be denied for the following reasons, including but not limited to:

  •  The household income does not meet the minimum income requirements for the rental dwelling after considering all legal sources of income. Minimum income requirements would not exceed 40% of rent to income ratio depending on if the rental dwelling is market or grant-restricted. Some dwelling units have federal, state and local grant restrictions that set the income requirements.
  •  The applicant does not meet the financial qualifications or does not pass the background credit check as necessary.
  •  The applicant meets the financial qualifications and passes the background credit check, as necessary, but does not pass the criminal background check.
  •  The application contains fraudulent information, or the application is not truthful or complete.
  •  The applicant cannot or does not provide the necessary documentation to verify their income or other required information when due.
  •  The applicant fails to respond to any inquiry in a timely manner.
  •  The applicant is non-cooperative or abusive with the CHAD’s staff
  •  The applicant changes address or other contact information without informing CHAD in writing.
  •  The applicant, once approved, fails to rent in a timely manner.


Should CHAD deny your application and you believe that the information upon which the denial was based is incorrect, or if you have additional information that was not considered during the review of your application, then you may request an appeal of the decision. An appeal must be submitted in writing within 14 days of the date of the denial letter. The request must include a letter from the applicant that states the reasons for the appeal and new supporting documentation from an independent third party. The information must be verifiable by CHAD staff. A written decision will be provided within two weeks. Please note that housing units are NOT held during the appeals process.


As set forth above, all household members that are 18 years and older may be subject to a background investigation by Western Reporting. We will obtain credit reports, court records (civil and criminal), and employment and rental references to verify all information put forth in the application for housing. In the event of an adverse action (denial of tenancy), the applicant has a right to a free copy of the screening report issued by Western Reporting, if requested within 60 days, and upon written request, the right to dispute the accuracy of information provided by Western Reporting or by the entities the applicant discloses (employers, landlords etc.)

Please review the application process, outlined below, before completing the CHAD Rental Application.

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Community Housing Advocacy and Development 531 East Roosevelt Road, Suite 200 Wheaton, IL 60187 (Map + directions) Phone: (630) 456-4452 Fax: (630) 580-9244

Office hours
Monday–Friday, 8:00am–4:30pm

From the community

“I recommend CHAD because if you are going through a bad time in your life CHAD can really help.”

—Iris R.


70.8% of poverty-stricken families in DuPage County increased between 2000 and 2010 CHAD helps families stay together.