‘This Further Assures Residents That All Who Qualify For Rent Relief Will Get It’
San Francisco-based Veritas Investments, one of the largest managers of apartment homes in San Francisco, announced today a first-of-its-kind rent relief program for its residents who apply to the State’s Emergency Rent Assistance Program (“ERAP”) program. Under the Veritas “Rent-relief Backstop” program, the firm will forgive the uncovered portion of a resident’s back-rent who has applied to and qualifies for State relief funds but may later find that such funds become depleted — resolving a concern that has been aired about the oft-confusing relief efforts rolled out in response to the pandemic.
“We like to think of it as providing our residents an early holiday gift, in taking one more concern off their plates,” said Jeff Jerden, Veritas’ COO. “Veritas has been laser focused on helping our residents stay safely housed throughout this unprecedented crisis, including having the farthest-reaching eviction moratorium in the country, and giving residents direct aid in the millions of dollars to date. Our new Rent-relief Backstop is the first to provide a safety net behind the State ERAP relief, removing all impediments for those who may qualify to apply.”
Veritas’ residents qualifying for this offer must apply for State ERAP funds at www.housingiskey.com and fully cooperate with the State program. Should an application for funds, which would have otherwise been approved, be denied based on a shortage of funding from the government at some point in the future, Veritas and its GreenTree Property Management affiliate will then contribute funding up to the 18-month maximum coverage period offered by the State program. This offer applies only where a resident has submitted a completed application to the State by January 31, 2022. The State and Governor Newsom have continued to say that 100% coverage is available up to the 18-month maximum for all who qualify and apply to the ERAP program.
GreenTree will monitor the screening process conducted by the State via its ERAP portal to determine whether a resident applies for and qualifies for ERAP funding. GreenTree’s commitment to fund rent relief coverage will apply only to residents who qualify for funding but are unable to receive it, should there be a lack of funds from the State, up to the maximum 18-month coverage period outlined in its ERAP program.
For residents who have a pending or approved application for rental assistance, the company will continue to hold off on imposing annual rent increases. In addition, GreenTree continues to waive late fees for residents who have a pending or approved application for rent relief.
Veritas/Greentree residents who have questions may call the firm’s Resident Services for support at (415) 347-8600. A letter announcing the program was sent to residents, and included access to a training video outlining specific steps, as explained by a nonprofit housing partner, Mission Economic Development Agency (“MEDA”), during recent outreach efforts.
For any San Francisco residents with questions about various protections under local, state, and federal law, there are local resources who can help including the San Francisco Rent Board (visit sfrb.org or call 415.252.4600); or the Eviction Defense Collaborative (call 415.659.9184, or by email firstname.lastname@example.org, or in-person at 1338 Mission Street).
Veritas has been a leader in resident-relief efforts throughout the pandemic, having announced in March 2020 that it was instituting what is believed to be the nation’s first eviction moratorium and later extended it further than any other California owners or managers; and Veritas has provided millions of dollars in direct rent-relief for its residents to date, working with those that ask for assistance as well as contacting them directly.
“We will also continue to support San Francisco residents through the wide variety of programs that Veritas currently participates in or has initiated itself, including its Open Doors Program that has provided temporary, furnished apartments at no cost to victims of domestic violence and, more recently, to Afghan refugees arriving in the Bay Area; the Home Bridge Program that helps families find relief during times of crisis, emergency or unforeseen circumstances through partnerships with Ronald McDonald House Charities and UCSF; and through our partnerships with Project Open Hand, HealthRight 360, Self-Help for the Elderly, and other programs,” added Jerden.