Rental Assistance Program


Questions about RAP? Attend our monthly Case Manager Training on RAP Applications on the second Wednesday at 1:30 every month. Click this link to join or call 1-650-479-3207

***DMH will be closed May 8th, 2024 in observance of Truman Day, office hours will resume in June 2024.***

FUNDING STATUS: Due to lack of funding, DMH Housing will NOT be accepting RAP one-time assistance applications through June 2024.

Please be aware:

  • DMH only accepts RAP applications from behavioral health support service agencies. Applications coming directly from persons needing the assistance cannot be processed, and we do not send applications directly to persons needing assistance.
  • Only the most current version of the application will be processed. The most current version says "Revised 7/2023" in the lower right corner of each page. If the support services person doesn't have this version, they should send an email to requesting the current application, and the form will be emailed to them.
  • Applications are only accepted via email. Encrypted email must be used to comply with HIPAA. If you're not sure how to encrypt email, check with your agency. You can also password-protect the application PDF instead of using encryption.

ALTERNATIVES TO RAP: Other assistance programs exist that do many of the same things RAP does, especially when it comes to utility assistance and eviction prevention. 

  • U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Rental Assistance Finder. Use this program finder to locate rental and utility assistance throughout the U.S. and Missouri.
  • Check with the faith-based and non-profit relief agencies in your county. Many of them have access to funds through the CARES Act that reimburse them for relief activities associated with job loss due to COVID-19. These may include: Catholic Charities, Salvation Army, your local Community Action Agency, and other independent non-profits.
  • Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG): the Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC) oversees distribution of ESG funds to Missouri agencies. Many agencies receive funds for emergency homelessness prevention and short-term housing assistance. See ESG funding approvals here (click on "Approvals" for the current year).
  • Missouri Housing Trust Fund (MHTF): MHDC also distributes funds from the Missouri Housing Trust fund, which provides some agencies with funds specifically for homeless prevention. See MHTF funding approvals here (click on "Approvals" for the current year).
  • LIHEAP: The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) can make one-time payments to assist households to pay a current utility bill, or to avoid a utility shutoff. 
  • Ameren Missouri offers the Clean Slate Program for customers impacted by COVID-19.
  • United Way 211 resource search site for Kansas City area and western Missouri counties.
  • Also see the DMH Housing Resources web page for a variety of housing resources listed by type.

One-Time Assistance

RAP one-time assistance (OTA) is provided to (1) prevent eviction and re-establish housing stability; and/or (2) assist households to move into safe and affordable rental housing. This assistance is intended to help households who have adequate resources to rent on their own once they have been assisted. Therefore, assisted households must, in practice, have stable income where rent and utilities do not exceed 50% of their income, and/or a permanent housing voucher such as a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher.


Rental costs:

  • Up to three months of rent. This can include rent in arrears ("back rent"), and/or move-in costs: a security deposit (counts as one month's rent) and first month’s rent
  • Rental application fees up to $100 total, for applicants who have zero income.

Utility costs:

  • Utility deposits totaling up to $500
  • Past due utility bills totaling up to $600

Other costs directly related to preserving or accessing stable housing (considered on a case-by-case basis). Any eligible household may access all of the above-listed types of assistance once per year.


  • Costs associated with home ownership or mortgages
  • Late fees, court costs, or legal fees
  • Hotel or motel stays
  • Rent or move-in costs for sober living facilities (such as Oxford House)
  • Future rent beyond the current month of the application


  • The Applicant must be receiving mental health services and/or substance use disorder services from a DMH-contracted provider agency.
  • The Applicant’s household must be in an unstable situation that can be stabilized by one-time assistance (late rent, a notice to vacate received, a pending eviction, etc.); or, a situation that could be improved by moving into safer and more affordable rental housing (current rent cannot be sustained, housing is substandard, cannot afford move-in costs, etc.).
  • The Applicant must have a combined household income of no more than 50% of their Area Median Income.
  • Applicants for rental application fees must have zero income and the ability to sustain rent through means other than cash income (e.g., a housing subsidy such as Section 8 or assistance from a family member).


  • Applications are only accepted during the first five business days of the month and must be received by DMH Housing during this time period in order to be considered for assistance (applications submitted after that date for the month will not be reviewed).
  • Applications must be complete within the five working-day period when DMH accepts applications in order to be considered for assistance.  Applications that are missing required supporting documents such as a copy of a lease, completed and legible W-9 form, or copies of utility bills, are not complete and will be returned to the support worker submitting the application. See the application cover sheet for a complete list of all required support documents.
  • Applications must come from a community support worker or other employee of a service provider involved in providing community support services. That person and the Head of Household fill out the application jointly. Applications cannot be accepted directly from persons in need of assistance. Non-DMH agencies may submit one-time assistance applications as well, but the household must have a person actively engaged in DMH services in order to qualify.


  • Timeline for processing: 
    • Complete applications are due by 5th working day of the month, by 5 p.m.
    • Incomplete applications will be rejected. DMH does not keep any record of rejected applications. A complete application must be submitted by the deadline above to be considered for assistance.
    • All applications that can be referred for assistance, based on eligibility and available funding, will be referred for payment no later than the 15th of the month
    • Payment should be mailed out by DMH's contractor agency (Economic Security Corp. in Joplin) no later than the 10th working day after the 15th of the month (mail date may be sooner depending on what day of the week the 15th falls on).
    • RAP one-time assistance is not emergency assistance, and cannot be arranged overnight. DMH strives to process all applications within the above timeframe, but the volume of requests may prevent this. Please be patient, and seek out other resources while waiting.
  • All payments are made directly to creditors, e.g., rental property owners, property management companies, public housing authorities, and/or utility companies. NO payments are made directly to the household that applied for assistance.
  • The support person who submitted the application will receive an email notifying them the application has been approved and referred for payment.  The support person or tenant can use this email as verification to the creditor that payment has been approved. DMH Housing does not do pledges to utility companies.
  • For questions about how to fill out an application, email
  • Securely email applications to (email must be encrypted or the application PDF must be password-protected to comply with HIPAA requirements).

Rental Assistance Program Operations Manual

The Rental Assistance Program (RAP) Operations Manual sets out the policies and procedures the DMH Housing Unit follows in the administration of its state-funded housing assistance program. It is written to make RAP as open and transparent as possible.

The Manual is designed to be most easily used as a PDF document. It is extensively hyperlinked internally for easy navigation. It also has numerous links to external resources on the Web.

RAP Operations Manual Revised March 11, 2020

DMH Housing published a revision of the RAP Operations Manual on March 11, 2020 (updates are found in Chapter 2 and do not substantially affect processing centers). Future updates will be posted here and updated sections will be noted with an asterisk in the section heading.

Click the link below to open, print, or save the RAP Operations Manual as a PDF file.