The Real Deal New York

Landlords remain wary of de Blasio’s war on homelessness

The mayor hopes to move 6,000 into private housing by fall

April 11, 2015 02:00PM

Bill de Blasio and a DHS call center (credit: Jennifer Hsu)

Bill de Blasio and a DHS call center (credit: Jennifer Hsu)

Mayor Bill de Blasio has launched an $11 million war on homelessness and he’s seeking to house thousands. Yet city landlords remain wary.

Last month, the city began making robocalls to landlords, asking them to house homeless families from the shelter system. In the 45-second taped call, the mayor says that landlords who take him up on his offer will receive a $1,000 signing bonus.

“We’re calling landlords and asking them if they have vacant apartments,” Rick Fromberg, a senior advisor to the mayor, who runs the landlord phone bank, told WNYC.

The city hopes to move some 6,000 families into private housing by September, according to WNYC. As of Monday, there were some 57,089 people living in shelters.

The city created the program, dubbed LINC, last year to get the homeless out of shelters and into private apartments. It’s paying at least 70 percent of the rent for those who qualify.

Still, many landlords remain wary of both city bureaucracy and troublesome tenants. Nevertheless, city officials are hopeful that property owners will do their part.

“We are in a war against homelessness,” said Deputy Mayor Lilliam Barrios-Paoli. “It’s not an acceptable status, so yes, we have to be very focused and very targeted and very serious about it because it is not a good thing for anyone to be in that situation.” [WNYC] Christopher Cameron

  • Edward Johnson

    If you allowed landlords to evict bad tenants in less than 2 months (like nearly every other city in the USA) then perhaps landlords would be a little more willing to take a risk here.
    It’s as if de Blasio has forgotten 3 years ago when the City screwed over landlords with the worker’s advantage program. “Please take these homeless tenants and we’ll guarantee the rent” said the government (sound familiar). Then the City just stopped paying the rent – even though they made promises to pay. And then, it took landlords over a year to evict the non-paying tenants.
    The program didn’t work said Cuomo. But apparently they want to try again.
    I can’t see why any landlord would trust de Blasio.

    • rental guy

      Had a few work advantage tenants . They destroyed the apartments and ALL left owing thousands. Why do it again?

      • Slikk Rikk Tha Ruler

        They ALL destroyed the apartments? Find that hard to believe. A few bad apples spoil the bunch. I’m a program tenant who pays on time. My landlord wishes all of his tenants were like my family.

        • rental guy

          They all did. They new that the program ended in two years and they would be returning to the shelter system anayway.

          • Marc

            I own apartments out of NYC so I didn’t go through that program but had similar results whenever I tried to be generous. Over the years I’d set aside a number of units (10-15%) that I would go easy on those residents due to who were obvious to me to be the most needy. Some were already on sec.8 & no doubt would be off sec.8 if I charged them market rate. I am fully mortgaged as I am constantly improving, not just maintaining. A year ago or so I had enough. To these people(even the ones that didn’t physically destroy) I am someone to be pissed on. If you ever want to be hated then just be good to someone. There is no room to be generous, just be fair and treat everyone the same or you will be punished for decency.
            Since I stopped being nice and became fair my income is up substantially. My residents continue to be treated well and their maintenance and other issues are treated lightning fast as always. I have a few that hate because I stopped taking abuse but thankfully I am not under the thumb of rent stabilization/control of any sort & have been weeding out the trouble. I am more encouraged than ever. The best gauge of how well you do are the 70% of tenants that turn over within 5 years or less. They send referrals and are the mostly more honest and aware of your efforts.
            I prefer to leave “affordable” housing to slum lords. Those tenants generally deserve it. In business if you want a friend then get a dog. For the first time in 2 decades I am starting to live.

      • tony

        what’s worse is these homeless tenants can end up as squatters

    • Guest

      ►►►I RECEIVED FIRST DRAFT OF $13000!@ak11: