Pinellas Landlord Forgives $100 in Rent for Every Hour Tenants Volunteer for Local Charities

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A landlord in St. Petersburg, Florida, is making way for those who have been affected by COVID-19. In exchange for some volunteer work, their lives are being made better.

What We Know:

  • At Contemporary Housing Alternatives of Florida, a non-profit organization that provides affordable housing to low-income families, some renters have lost hours due to COVID-19, others have lost their employment. As the landlord of more than 500 affordable housing units occupied by low-income families, staffers have seen firsthand how the pandemic has hit working families.
  • Established in 1992, Contemporary Housing runs 14 properties, mostly in the Pinellas Park and Lealman area. To qualify to live there, residents must make no more than about 80 percent of the area median income. The non-profit also has housing that is designated for families whose income falls below 60 percent of the region’s household average. Rent for a two-bedroom apartment is about $700 a month.
  • About 20 percent of its tenants are behind on rent because they have lost either work or hours since March. Many of them worked in the hospitality industry, including cooks and food servers. Holly Butler, the organization’s director of property management, had an idea. The non-profit introduced a “Back on Track” program that forgives $100 of overdue rent for every hour a tenant volunteers for a recognized non-profit charity. The offer applies only to renters who have lost income because of the pandemic.
  • In order to take part in these benefits, they have to abide by some rules set by Butler. They have to show verifiable proof that they were affected by COVID. Then, after working for a charity where they can get written proof of their volunteer hours, they get a $100 credit for overdue rent for every hour worked. They are volunteering for a number of local organizations, including Hope Villages of America and the High Point Neighborhood Family Center.
  • According to MSN, more than two dozen residents have participated in the program, volunteering at food banks, cleaning up a trailer park, and removing trash along the shorelines with Tampa Bay Watch. At another organized event, volunteers collected more than 400 pounds of trash from nearby neighborhoods.

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on many, but it’s always a relief when someone is there to help lighten the load.

The post Pinellas Landlord Forgives $100 in Rent for Every Hour Tenants Volunteer for Local Charities appeared first on Black News Alerts.

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