Rental Assistance

Rent assistance is intended to help households that generally have enough income, month to month, to remain in their home but have experienced a temporary financial disruption for which they need one-time assistance. 

General Assistance is an income-based program. You must have sufficient income unless you are medically unable to work, as determined by a medical professional.

Rent assistance is for a single month and is not intended or likely to cover a full month of rent.  It is a partial subsidy, meaning eligible applicants will need to show they can pay for the remaining amount of their due rent in order to qualify.


  • Polk County Residency 
  • Valid photo identification
  • Social security card 
  • Verification of all household income and expenses from the last 30 days
  • Eligibility requires applicants to provide evidence there is income going back at least 30 days, and continuing, and that their current rent is affordable in future months
  • If eligible, General Assistance will provided assistance based on family size
  • For rent assistance your landlord must be willing to accept a Polk County voucher for what is likely only a portion of your rent and must agree not to evict for 30 days for non-payment of rent
  • A properly completed Landlord Statement

To apply for assistance, fill out an online application or a paper application and bring it to the General Assistance office.  You can also apply by phone by calling (515) 286-2088 or by sending an e-mail to In most cases, an interview will take 15-20 minutes to complete.