2021 Qualified Allocation Plan

The funding round officially opened Monday May 24, 2021. Applications will be accepted until Friday July 2. 2021. Please refer to the application instructions for submission guidelines. The 2021 Architectural Technical Standards (ATS) Manual is also available for review.

The 2021 Qualified Allocation Plan (QAP), which helps the Department of Housing (DOH) direct federal affordable housing funds to the neighborhoods where they are most needed, is now available. Starting in 2019, DOH announced its intention to issue a new QAP every two years, allowing affordable housing developers the opportunity to plan and prepare.

The QAP sets forth the rules under which the City offers affordable housing development funding in the form of federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, commonly referred to as LIHTC. The QAP describes the selection criteria and application requirements for receiving these federal tax credits and tax-exempt bonds.

LIHTC is a public-private partnership in which investors provide equity for low-income rental properties in exchange for a federal tax credit over several decades. LIHTC is the most significant resource available for creating affordable housing in the United States. Without the equity, most affordable rental housing projects do not generate sufficient funds to work financially. The City of Chicago receives a limited number of these housing tax credits to allocate each year based on its population.

The 2021 QAP includes recommendations from the country's first Racial Equity Impact Assessment (REIA) on a QAP that DOH conducted last year. REIAs examine how different racial and ethnic groups will likely be affected by a proposed action or decision. DOH hosted a series of workshops focused on determining the benefits and burdens of the QAP in its current form. Through the REIA QAP, DOH sought to examine the QAP and its processes through a racial equity lens and consider how incorporating the needs of the diverse resident population into its design may garner opportunities for wealth-building and advancing communities developed with LIHTC. The recommendations include increasing opportunities for developers and contractors of color to participate, ensuring tenant applicants are not unfairly screened out by conviction records or credit scores, and addressing residents’ mental health needs.

Reference Materials





*If you need to access this document in a language other than English, please email your request to doh@cityofchicago.org for a copy in your preferred language. Allow at least 10 business days for processing.


REIA coverDownload the
 REIA report

QAP cover

Download the 2021 QAP 

ATS cover

Download the ATS report




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