Verification of housing costs is not required for SNAP. Allow the following housing costs when determining the excess shelter deduction:
Rent or Mortgage Payments
Allow ongoing current charges for the home where the SNAP household lives. These charges include: rent, mortgage payments, condo and association fees, loan repayments for the purchase of a mobile home, and other charges that lead to the ownership of the residence. This also includes any interest on such charges.
Extra charges that are billed by the landlord as part of the rent such as cable, pets fee, washer, dryer, and parking may be allowed as rent. Use the appropriate utility standard if the SNAP unit incurs utility expenses that are not included in the rent. (PM 13-01-08-b and WAG 13-01-08-a). Do not allow a utility standard if the rent includes all utilities.
Example: Mr. B's lot rent is $100. He also pays water and sewerage $8, garbage $4, cable $15, and a pet fee of $10 to the landlord. Allow the lot rent, cable charge, and pet fee as part of the rent. The total amount of Mr. B's rent is $125. He is billed by the utility company for heat. Mr. B qualifies for the Air Conditioning/Heating Standard.
Payments Made in Advance
If a SNAP household makes payments in advance, allow the current charges without regard to when it is actually paid.
Example: Mr. B's rent is $350 a month. He received an income tax refund of $1,050 in February and used the money to pay his rent 3 months in advance (March, April, May). Continue to allow Mr. B a housing cost of $350 for each month.
Shared Household Expenses
If housing costs are shared with another family, only allow the SNAP household's share. The SNAP household's share is the amount that the SNAP household is responsible for paying.
One-time Only Expenses
Do not allow as housing costs onetime only charges, such as security deposits, closing costs, late fees, or penalties.
Illinois Hardest Hit Fund (HHF)
See PM 08-04-04-o for policy on the treatment of income and shelter expenses under the Illinois Hardest Hit Fund.
Group Home Residents
For a resident of a group home, including a CILA, allow the amount the group home states the client pays for shelter expenses, including utilities, as a housing cost for SNAP benefits.
Supportive Living Facility (SLF) Residents
- Only residents residing in a Supportive Living Facility (SLF) covered under the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) waiver qualify for SNAP (WAG 04-05-04). The waiver protects the status quo of residents who were already receiving SNAP at the time of the waiver approval and allows these residents to continue to qualify for SNAP and not be considered a resident of an institution. An additional extension of the FNS waiver under federal legislation, H.J. Res. 75, 117th Cong. (2022) (enacted) signed into law March 11, 2022 amended Section 106(3) of the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2022 (Division A of Pub. L. 117-43) and extended the limitation clause in Section 9(i)(2) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 from March 11, 2022, to March 15, 2022. This allowed the FNS waiver to be extended from March 11, 2022 to March 15, 2022. The Omnibus Appropriations Bill, signed into law on March 15, 2022 further extends the FNS waiver approval and allows residents residing in SLF facilities in WAG 04-05-04 to continue to qualify for SNAP participation through December 31, 2022. The resident must still meet all other eligibility factors PM 04-05-04, PM 05-11-02-a, WAG 05-11-02-a.
- For a SLF resident who receives Medical assistance and lives alone, the monthly housing cost is equal to the current SSI rate for an individual, less $90. For an SLF resident who receives Medical assistance and shares an apartment, the monthly housing cost is equal to 1/2 of the current SSI rate for a couple, less $90.
- When spouses who receive Medical assistance live together and are a single SNAP unit, the monthly housing cost is equal to the current SSI rate for a couple, less $180.
- For a private pay SLF resident, the SLF is not limited to charging the person at the SSI rate less $90, for housing costs. Verify the amount of the private pay housing costs that the resident is responsible for paying.
Taxes and Insurance
- Allow property taxes, State and local assessments, and homeowner's insurance on the home where the SNAP household lives, as housing costs. If these costs are shared with another family, only allow the SNAP household's share. These costs are not allowed if the SNAP household is only renting the property where they reside. Do not allow the cost of a separate rider for insuring furniture or personal property. A separate rider that covers the dwelling of the home where the SNAP household resides, such as flood insurance, may be allowed if it can be identified as a cost that covers the dwelling and not personal items.
- Do not allow that portion of rent or mortgage that was also allowed as a cost of doing business.
- If the SNAP household lives with an ineligible unit member who is excluded from the SNAP household, and the excluded member is billed or pays for the expense. See PM 05-03-00 to determine the allowable expense amount.
Shelter Expenses for Homeless SNAP Households
See PM 06-04-03 and WAG 06-04-03 for treatment of shelter expenses incurred by a SNAP homeless household PM 06-04-02 during the month.