Superstorm Sandy Housing Recovery Assistance Programs

 
The Christie Administration’s Housing Assistance Programs Makes $905 Million Available for Homeowners and Homebuyers Impacted by Superstorm Sandy & $354 Million to Help Provide Affordable Rental Units and Assist with Repairs
 

 
Marking a major step forward in the recovery from Super Storm Sandy, the Christie Administration has housing assistance programs that make $905 million dollars in grants available to homeowners and homebuyers impacted by the storm. The grants are designed to encourage homeowners to resettle in their primary residences and help them reconstruct, rehabilitate, elevate and mitigate their homes. New Jersey additionally has $354 million in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Disaster Recovery funds for programs specifically for renters and rental property owners. These programs will replenish the stock of rental housing throughout affected areas, repair affordable rental units left uninhabitable by the storm, and provide affordable housing for special needs populations. Some of these existing programs include:
 

 
** Programs For Homeowners and Homebuyers **
 
HOMEOWNER RECONSTRUCTION, REHABILITATION, ELEVATION, and MITIGATION (RREM) PROGRAM
 
As of August 1, 2013, the RREM Program is no longer accepting applications.
 
WHO: Homeowners whose primary residences on October 29, 2012, were damaged by Superstorm Sandy in one of the nine most-impacted counties (Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Union) are eligible for the RREM grant. Additionally, homeowners must have a FEMA registration number, a household adjusted gross annual income of less than $250,000, and damages of at least $8,000 or 1 foot of water on the first floor.
 
WHAT: Currently, $1.1 billion has been allocated to the RREM Program from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to help eligible Homeowners recover from Sandy. Eligible homeowners are able to potentially receive up to $150,000 in grant funds to reconstruct, repair, elevate and mitigate damaged primary homes.
 
WHY: The RREM Program is intended to help homeowners navigate the recovery process by providing funding to address homeowners’ unmet construction-related needs. The goal of the RREM Program is to fill the financial gap, up to $150,000, that may remain despite funding received from other sources such as insurances, FEMA, and the Small Business Administration that is to be used for rebuilding and repairs. Homeowners are not guaranteed the full $150,000.
 
HOW: A homeowner selects their own contractor to repair or rebuild the damaged home. The contractor must be properly licensed in the State of New Jersey to perform the required construction and must not be on the State or Federal debarment lists. The RREM Program provides the homeowner with a Housing Advisor and a RREM Project Manager. The Housing Advisor helps the homeowner navigate the RREM Program and the RREM Project Manager monitors the construction activity to ensure the homeowner complies with the RREM Program construction standards.

 
HAZARD MITIGATION GRANT PROGRAM (HMGP) ELEVATION PROGRAM
 
As of September 16, 2013, the HMGP Elevation Program is no longer accepting applications.
 
WHO: Homeowners whose primary single-family residence is located in one of the nine most Sandy-impacted counties (Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Union) where no elevation work has been started.
 
WHAT: This $100 million reimbursement program will assist homeowners with the elevation of their residence in line with the flood insurance risk maps in affected communities.
 
WHY: To assist homeowners with the elevation of their home to mitigate against future flood damage and reduce flood insurance premiums.
 
HOW: Expenses that are cost reasonable and are directly associated with elevation may be eligible for up to $30,000 in reimbursement.

 
SANDY HOMEBUYER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
 
As of September 30, 2013, the Sandy Homebuyer Assistance Program is no longer accepting pre-applications. Applications received through September 30, 2013 will continue to be processed on a first-come, first-serve basis.
 
WHO: Eligible households that currently reside in the nine most impacted counties (Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Union) and meet low and moderate income (“LMI”) guidelines (less than or equal to 80% AMI).
 
WHAT: This $25 million program has been allocated to provide an increased opportunity for low and moderate-income households to purchase homes in the nine most Sandy-impacted communities.
 
WHY: Program will help renters displaced by sandy to successfully purchase a home, as well as to stimulate the market for new and restored homes in the nine counties.
 
HOW: The program will provide a second mortgage of up to $50,000 to be used for the purchase of a second home in the form of a non-amortizing loan requiring no monthly payments, and is forgiven after 5 years as long as the purchaser retains ownership for at least that period of time.

 
HOMEOWNER RESETTLEMENT PROGRAM
 
As of August 1, 2013, the Resettlement Program is no longer accepting applications.
 
WHO: Homeowners whose primary residences were damaged by the storm in the nine most-impacted counties (Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, and Union) who have sustained at least $8,000 in damages or more than one foot of flooding on the first floor of their residence as a result of Sandy.
 
WHAT: This $180 million program is aimed at encouraging Sandy-impacted homeowners to remain in the nine counties that were most seriously affected by the storm. This program will provide $10,000 grants to eligible homeowners to encourage them to resettle in their existing primary home or resettle in the same county.
 
WHY: This program will help to restore home values and stabilize many devastated communities.
 
HOW: Homeowners must agree to remain in the county of their damaged residence for three consecutive years following the grant award.

 
** Programs For Landlords and Rental Property Owners **
 
LANDLORD RENTAL REPAIR PROGRAM (LRRP)
 
As of November 15 2013, the Landlord Rental Repair Program is no longer accepting applications.
 
WHO: Landlords and Property Owners with 25 or fewer units.
 
WHAT: this $70 million program will provide up to $50,000 per unit for eligible rental property owners to repair, reconstruct or elevate property damaged by Superstorm Sandy. Rehabilitated units must be rented year-round to low- and moderate- income households.
 
WHY: Program will increase supply of affordable housing and help revitalize damaged neighborhoods.
 
HOW: Funding can be used for eligible costs for rehabilitation, reconstruction, demolition (incidental to reconstruction), elevation, and storm mitigation.

 
LANDLORD INCENTIVE PROGRAM (LIP)
 
WHO: Landlords and Property Owners.
 
WHAT: This $40 million program will expand the State’s inventory of affordable housing for low- and moderate-income households impacted by Superstorm Sandy, assisting at least 1,000 families.
 
WHY: Program will help low- and moderate- income households obtain affordable housing.
 
HOW: The program will provide rental property owners roughly the difference between 30% of the tenant’s monthly income and federal fair market rents each month over a two-year period and allows rental property owners to provide affordable rental housing.

 
** Programs For Developers **
 
NEIGHBORHOOD ENHANCEMENT PROGRAM
 
WHO: For-profit and non-profit developers with support of the local government of the project location. The applicant may also be a government agency, redevelopment authority or public housing authority in partnership with a development entity.
 
WHAT: This $30 million program will provide funding to stabilize neighborhoods impacted by Superstorm Sandy.
 
WHY: Program is a focused effort to revitalize target neighborhoods through the creation of affordable housing.
 
HOW: provide zero percent loans to rehabilitate abandoned, foreclosed and vacant housing and to redevelop lots to create affordable housing options in formerly blighted buildings.

 
PREDEVELOPMENT LOAN FUND FOR AFFORDABLE RENTAL HOUSING
 
WHO: Non-profit developers in good standing with the State who will create affordable rental properties.
 
WHAT: This $10 million program will provide financing to help nonprofit developers revitalize Sandy-affected areas by covering the predevelopment costs associated with the redevelopment of properties that are currently considered unsafe, underutilized, or in foreclosure.
 
WHY: Program will revitalize communities and address developmental needs created or exacerbated by Superstorm Sandy.
 
HOW: Loan funding may be used for predevelopment costs including, but not limited to: project feasibility, legal fees, soil studies, site preparation, appraisals, and surveys.

 
SANDY SPECIAL NEEDS HOUSING FUND
 
WHO: Private for-profit and non-profit housing developers and public housing authorities who will create projects with a combination of rental housing and support services.
 
WHAT: This $25 million program will fund permanent supportive rental housing or community residences in which some or all of the units are affordable to low- and moderate- income special needs residences.
 
WHY: Program will provide rental housing and support services to special needs populations affected by Superstorm Sandy.
 
HOW: Funding can be used for hard and soft costs including: acquisition, rehabilitation, and construction.

 
FUND FOR RESTORATION OF MULTI-FAMILY RENTAL HOUSING
WHO: Private for-profit and non-profit housing developers and public housing authorities who will create and manage large multi-family developments.
 
WHAT: This $179,520,000 program provides funding to repair and construct affordable multi-family rental housing units in areas affected by Superstorm Sandy.
 
WHY: Program will help low- and moderate- income households obtain affordable housing.
 
HOW: Funding can be used for hard and soft costs including: acquisition, rehabilitation, and construction. This program will be available in conjunction with other multi-family programs offered by the State to leverage additional resources.
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