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The city has announced several new rules designed to make it easier for renters to apply for coveted spots in affordable housing, DNAinfo reports.
The regulations ensure that an applicant can't be disqualified solely based on their credit history, or a past appearance in housing court (i.e. appearing on the so-called "tenant blacklist). There will also be an easier appeals process for tenants who believe they were wrongfully rejected from an affordable housing lottery, as well as more accessible interview locations, and a requirement that interviewers provide interpretation services when necessary.
The rules also make it easier for veterans to apply for housing, clarifying how developers can assess a person's assets when they include income from government benefits like the GI bill. On the flip side, there will also be tighter regulations to ensure that applicants for affordable apartments will indeed be using them as a primary residence.
Many of the new rules are based on feedback from housing and community groups across the city, and a representative for the Actors Fund called the updated regulations "an excellent step."
“Disqualifications based solely on credit history, or because a tenant fought for his or her rights in housing court, have no place in our affordable housing programs," Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement. "These key improvements to the rules level the playing field and give every household the chance to find a home within their means.”
If you're interested in applying for affordable housing, you can read our guide here, and check for buildings currently accepting applications here.
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