Westchester Announces Four Covid-Aid Programs for Real Estate
COVID-19 hasn’t ended and neither has its impact in our Hudson Valley. Westchester County recently announced four housing assistance programs funded by HUD and the CARES Act to address the impacts of the pandemic.
The “Community Build Back Program” includes two programs that will utilize HUD money—the RED STOP Eviction Project and the RED Rent HELP Project—and two separate initiatives that will utilize $10 million in CARES ACT money—the Blue Priority Homeowners Initiative and the Blue Small Business Landlord Initiative.
The RED STOP Eviction Project utilizes federal HUD funds and will provide up to four months of rental or utility arrears for tenants facing eviction or shut off as long as they can demonstrate that their financial hardship is due to COVID. Tenants must be within 21 days of eviction, must demonstrate ability to pay their rent going forward, and must live in a Westchester Urban County Consortium municipality. Assistance is available through select non-profits including: Westchester Residential Opportunities, Community Housing Innovations, Washingtonville Housing Alliance and Choice of New Rochelle.
The Blue Priority Homeowners Initiative, uses $2.5 million and focuses on homeowners facing foreclosure. Th program, which is estimated will help 325 county households and assist them with up to four months of mortgage/cooperative arrears. Homeowners must show that COVID has negatively impacted their ability to pay their mortgage. The homeowner will also have to show they were up to date on payments as of March 2020.
A total of $7.5 million has been earmarked for the Blue Small Business Landlord Initiative to assist approximately 2,400 households in the county by working directly with their landlords and bringing their rent up to date. The program runs from now until the end of 2020, and can cover up to 75% of back rent for up to four months of rent for landlords who can show that their tenants were up to date in March, but have since not been able to pay their rent due to COVID. The program, to be done by lottery, will assist landlords who own between four and 20 units and will be run by the county’s Planning Department.
Fact sheets and applications (English and Spanish) for the programs are available on the County’s website at: www.westchestergov.com/HousingHelp.
Excerpts of this blog were taken from Real Estate In-Depth