Heating Assistance

  • Posted: 11.28.2016

As the winter season nears, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) is designed to assist qualifying low-income homeowners and renters with meeting the costs of home heating. According to the Iowa Department of Human Rights, applications will be accepted on a first-come-first-serve basis from Nov. 1, 2016, (Oct. 1 for elderly/disable) through April 30, 2017. Applicants may apply at their local community action center Monday through Friday or at times posted at the local center's office.

A household may qualify for assistance in this program if the household's annual income falls within the income range listed below. This program is not designed to pay a household's total energy costs, but to provide assistance in the payment of residential heating costs for eligible households.

At the time of application, LIHEAP requires proof of household income for the last three months and the most recent copy of your heating and electric bill. This initial determination is subject to review and totally dependent on the availability of federal funds. In most cases, benefits will be in the form of a credit applied to the qualifying household's heating bill by the utility company. Households residing in subsidized housing that are individually metered, and responsible for paying their primary heating costs, are eligible. Subsidized households that are master metered are usually not eligible to receive assistance benefits. Don't delay in making your application immediately.

The assistance is based on household income, household size, type of fuel, and type of housing. If you are not sure where to apply, please write to: LIHEAP, Iowa Department of Human Rights, Capitol Complex, Des Moines, IA 50319. Or, call your local community action agency listed below.


Households that are over LIHEAP regular income guidelines may be eligible for LIHEAP benefits through a medical waiver component. The medical expenses must be documented, paid and non-reimbursable. For more information, please contact your local community action agency listed below.


Mid-Sioux Opportunity, Inc.

Serving Cherokee County

Cherokee: 800-859-2025800-859-2025 or 712-225-3322712-225-3322

Ida Grove: 800-859-2025800-859-2025 or 712-364-2175712-364-2175

Le Mars: 800-859-2025800-859-2025 or 712-546-6603712-546-6603

Upper Des Moines Opportunity

Serving Buena  Vista, Clay, Dickinson, Emmet, O'Brien, Osceola, Palo Alto and Pocahontas Counties

Emmetsburg: 712-852-3482712-852-3482

Estherville: 712-362-2391712-362-2391

Pocahontas: 712-335-3335712-335-3335

Primghar: 712-957-1023712-957-1023

Sibley: 712-754-2573712-754-2573

Spencer: 712-262-7409712-262-7409

Spirit Lake: 712-336-1112712-336-1112

Storm Lake: 712-732-1757712-732-1757



  • Elderly (60 & over) and/or disabled: October 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017
  • All other households: November 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017


  • Original Social Security or I-94 card for ALL household members
  • Birthdates for ALL household members
  • Current Heat and Electric Bill - this may be two separate bills
  • Proof of Income - (for all household members 19, and over; this includes total household gross income from all sources). We must have complete proof of income to process your application.

FIXED INCOME: Includes Social Security Income, Aid to Families with Dependent Children or F.I.P., Veterans' Assistance, Unemployment Insurance and Pensions. Please provide copies of your check stubs for three months (13 weeks) preceding the date of the application.

WAGE EARNERS: A copy of the most recent calendar year Federal Income Tax Return or copies of your check stubs for three months (13 weeks) preceding the date of the application, or the past 12 months.

SELF-EMPLOYED/FARMERS: Copy of your most recent Federal Income Tax Return.

FIP AND SSI RECIPIENTS: Please bring your current DHS Notice of Decision or contact your local office for acceptable document information.

OTHER INCOME: Alimony and child support will also need to be verified.