Gov. DeSantis announces $250 million in mortgage and rent relief for Floridians

Coronavirus

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Cap News Services) – 2,600 Floridians would already be facing eviction if not for the moratorium put in place by Gov. DeSantis which is set to expire this coming Wednesday, but there is some hope for optimism.

DeSantis is making 250 million CARES Act dollars available to help struggling Floridians pay rents and mortgages.

It’s something the Florida Apartment Association has been urging for weeks.

“Obviously things are being stretched thin right now and so this is going to bring both residents as well as housing providers the relief that they need,” said Amanda Gill with FAA.

$120 million will go towards affordable housing and will be administered by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation.

“We’ll be working directly with their developer or landlords to square up their accounts with them,” said FHFC Executive Director Trey Price.

Counties will share an additional $120 million to help those who aren’t in affordable house, but are still struggling.

“There’s not enough affordable housing in Florida. So there are a lot of folks in market rate housing who are paying a good percentage of their monthly income to rent or mortgage,” said Price.

$2 million of the $250 million will go towards staffing and assistance for special needs housing.

The remaining $8 million will be used for anticipated administrative costs.

While the additional funds will provide some relief, the money won’t likely start flowing until July, which is why some groups are calling on Gov. DeSantis to extend his eviction moratorium for an additional three months.

But the Apartment Association believes programs like this one, not moratoriums, are the best way to help landlords and their tenants cover bills.

“We’ve already seen across the state, several local governments have established rental relief funds and that has made a huge impact both with our members, as well as residents, being able to pay their rent,” said Gill.

We reached out to the Governor’s Office and asked whether he intends to extend the eviction moratorium and if so for how long and were told that decision is still under review.

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