Open Today Expanded Relief Under Small Landlord Emergency Grant Program (SLEG)

Update: This program closes on October 13 at 4pm here is a great video that is sure to answer many of your questions: https://youtu.be/y1leBs3e3kQ 

The New Jersey Housing Mortgage and Finance Agency (NJHMFA) announced the expansion and reopening of its Small Landlord Emergency Grant (SLEG) Program to assist vulnerable renters across the state by covering their missed rent from April through July 2020. The program will reopen today, Monday, September 28th, at noon and will run until Tuesday, October 13th at 4:00 p.m. NJHMFA, whose mission is to increase the availability of and accessibility to safe, decent, and affordable housing to families in New Jersey, developed the SLEG Program to reimburse small landlords for missed or reduced rent payments between April 2020 and July 2020 due to COVID-19. Landlords approved for a grant must forgive any back rent or late fees incurred by their tenants. 

“Since April, New Jersey landlords have filed 30,000 eviction cases in Landlord-Tenant court. Although Governor Murphy has enacted an eviction moratorium to protect residents from being locked out of their homes for nonpayment of rent, this alarming number demonstrates that many New Jerseyans are struggling to pay rent,” said Charles A. Richman, Executive Director of New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. “Our goal with the SLEG Program is to mitigate hardship for as many landlords and tenants as possible in the current economic crisis. To this end, we have made some small but significant adjustments to the program to increase both eligibility and accessibility. Not only will we reach more renters in need, but we have also removed some of the barriers for landlords to apply.” 

Program Eligibility

  • Applicants must own a residential property in New Jersey with 3 to 30 rental units;
  • Applicants must be registered with the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ (DCA) Bureau of Housing Inspection;
  • The property must not be a seasonal or vacation rental property;
  • The property must have at least one non-vacant rental unit impacted by COVID-19 between April and July 2020;
  • The property must have low-to-moderate income rent levels. 

$15 million in CARES Act funding has been allocated to fund the first and second rounds of the SLEG Program. All completed eligible applications will be randomly sorted by computer to give each applicant an equal chance of being funded. Grant funding will be allocated on a case-by-case basis, based on the number of COVID-impacted units and the amount of missed rent. A list of all successful landlord applicants will be posted to the NJHMFA website, and letters will be sent to all tenants of awarded landlords.  

There is a range of tools available on NJHMFA’s website to assist property owners in preparing their applications. These include an application checklist, an annotated application with sample answers, and a Frequently Asked Questions list. The application is available in both English and Spanish, and NJHMFA has contracted interpretation services to support speakers of at least 10 additional languages: Arabic, Mandarin, Cantonese, Gujarati, Hindi, Italian, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, and Tagalog. Applicants can contact languagehelp@njhmfa.gov to receive a call within one business day from a representative who can communicate with them in their primary language. Potential applicants with specific questions can call NJHMFA’s toll-free hotline at 866-280-9756 or email sleg@njhmfa.gov

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