Livingston announced this week that in an effort to attract new residents and help existing residents, the township would be starting up a new affordability assistance program. The purpose of the program is to provide relief from financial hardship for those moving into deed restricted affordable units.
New residents who rent housing in Livingston can apply to have the township pay for their first month's rent. This is to alleviate the financial hardship caused by having to pay for a security deposit and first month’s rent at the same time.
“The Township elected to pay the first month’s rent rather than the security deposit, so the tenant will have an incentive to maintain the unit in order to receive the security deposit back when they move out,” said Jackie Hollis, Livingston's Municipal Housing Liaison and Land Use Administrator. “This is an equal housing opportunity, on a first-come, first-served basis, and successful recipients of this program will not be required to pay back this assistance. The new Affordability Assistance Program is funded exclusively by development fees required to be set aside for affordable housing and not tax dollars.”
To be eligible for the New Affordability Assistance Program, the following criteria must be present.
- There are affordability assistance funds remaining in the budget for the year. This will include whether sufficient funds have been allocated to very low-income households.
- The applicant rents a deed-restricted affordable unit in the Township that they maintain as their primary residence.
- Priority is given to very low-income households.
- Only one award per household is permitted, but this requirement can be waived with justification.
- The applicant is income certified. Applicants for assistance with first month’s rent will have already been income certified. Applicants applying for all other types of assistance will require income certification at the time of application.
- Assistance is paid directly to the landlord.
- The maximum amount available for each applicant is one month’s rent.
“Livingston is a caring community and is dedicated to making housing affordable,” Hollis said. “We will continue to identify other grants that will help to assist our residents.”
For more information about this program, visit the Affordable Housing page on Livingston's website. Questions can be directed to 973-535-7954.
The Livingston Planning Department is located at the Township Municipal Building, 357 South Livingston Avenue, on the second floor. Offices are open from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm.