Murphy Administration and New Jersey Legislature Champion Substantial Affordable Housing Investment to Facilitate Key Initiatives Supporting Low and Moderate-Income Families, Older Adults, and Individuals with Specialized Housing Needs
TRENTON – Governor Phil Murphy‘s FY2022 budget and additional legislation allocates $73 million to New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) to advance affordable rental housing and homeownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income families, older adults, and individuals with specialized housing needs.
New Jersey has one of the most complex housing environments in the nation. Anyone watching the news, reading an article, or trying to buy or rent a home can see how challenging the state’s housing market has become since the inception of the COVID-19 pandemic. The critical funding allocated towards housing empowers NJHMFA to meet the diverse needs of individuals, families and communities across this state by increasing access to affordable rental and purchase opportunities.
The fiscal year 2022 budget exemplifies the state’s commitment to helping New Jersey families and communities recover and grow in sustainable ways. NJHMFA is being allocated $20 million to continue and expand its vital Down Payment Assistance (DPA), $22 million to increase the number of affordable units put into production this year, $10 million for an innovative Risk Share pilot program, and $1 million to continue assisting families facing housing insecurity through the Foreclosure Mediation Assistance Program. In addition, the governor signed legislation (S1255/A1925) allocating $20 million for the Special Needs Housing Trust Fund.
"The COVID-19 pandemic exposed the fragility of our housing situation across the nation and in New Jersey. That fragility is spurring us to further action, and the critical issue of housing – quality, safe housing that everyday working families can actually afford – is getting additional funding and attention in this budget," said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, who also serves as DCA Commissioner and HMFA board chair. "This year, we have a real opportunity to shape housing policy, create affordable homes, and improve the New Jersey housing landscape in a lasting way that will help residents rent units at affordable rates and build intergenerational wealth through home ownership."
"As Chairman of the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee, I am constantly reminded of the many, diverse housing needs in our State," said Senator Troy Singleton (D-Burlington). "I am incredibly proud that the budget this Legislature passed and the Governor signed into law prioritized funding for special needs housing, down payment assistance for first-time homeowners, and help for homeowners to avoid foreclosure. I will continue to work to ensure that every New Jersey resident has a safe, affordable roof over their head, and a place to call home."
"As Chairman of the Assembly Housing Committee, I have witnessed firsthand the many injustices, and shortfalls New Jersey residents have faced when it comes to housing," said Assemblyman Benjie E. Wimberly (D-Bergen and Passaic). "Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly increased the need for housing assistance. This year’s budget gives us the opportunity to address more housing needs like affordable rental housing, homeownership opportunities for Low and Moderate-Income families, and housing for individuals with Special Needs. This is a win-win for our New Jersey."
"I applaud the work of the NJHMFA and its goal of helping low and moderate income New Jerseyans fulfill the dream of homeownership," said Assemblywoman Mila M. Jasey (D-Essex and Morris). "I am delighted that we ensured this year’s budget fully funds all current programs and the opportunities they create. I am honored to partner with the NJHMFA."
"Governor Murphy’s FY2022 budget makes a historic investment in housing access," said Melanie R. Walter, Executive Director, New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. "Our mission is to provide New Jersey residents with opportunities for safe, decent, affordable housing. This budget improves our capacity to meet this mission at a crucial moment in our shared history."
Since its inception, NJHMFA has advanced affordable housing creation; developed supportive housing; supported housing stabilization for low and fixed-income seniors; and aided first-time homebuyers across our state. This budget empowers the agency to expand its capacity in each of these functions, utilizing the agency’s expertise to build and improve access to housing-related social and economic capital, improving New Jersey’s critical infrastructure.
Down Payment Assistance (DPA)
Amount: $20 million
Brief Description: The NJHMFA Down Payment Assistance (DPA) program provides eligible first-time homebuyers $10,000 in down payment assistance as well as highly competitive mortgage rates.
Amount: $22 million
Brief Description: Gap Financing advances the State’s constitutional obligation to provide quality affordable housing by increasing the state’s capacity to facilitate competitive projects that are otherwise infeasible in this capital- intensive environment.
Amount: $10 million
Brief Description: The Risk Share pilot will enhance credit access for innovative and high priority developments throughout the state.
Foreclosure Mediation Assistance Program
Amount: $1 million
Brief Description: The Foreclosure Mediation Assistance Program is a free housing counseling initiative that works with New Jersey’s existing court mediation program to help homeowners who have received a foreclosure complaint.
Special Needs Housing Trust Fund
Amount: $20 million
Brief Description: The Special Needs Housing Trust Fund provides capital financing to developers and government entities to develop permanent supportive housing and other community-based residences for individuals with special needs. Governor Murphy signed legislation (S1255/A1925) with primary sponsors Senators Troy Singleton and Nellie Pou, and Assemblymembers Benjie E. Wimberly, Verlina Reynolds-Jackson, and Cleopatra G. Tucker, that ensured $20 million would be allocated to that fund for FY22.
In addition to new affordable home production and homebuyer assistance contained in the FY22 budget, Governor Murphy has signed a series of bills that will be implemented under the FY22 budget to advance the Administration’s comprehensive affordable housing policy, improving access and opportunity for all New Jersey residents. The landmark New Jersey Foreclosure Prevention Act provides direct funding to support foreclosure prevention by keeping people in their homes, and to avoid the loss of owner-occupied housing through an array of programmatic interventions. The Act empowers NJHMFA to address the rising number of foreclosures in New Jersey, not only helping to stabilize families’ home ownership, but in doing so, their neighborhood as well.
Combined, these commitments, as well as new federal funding dedicated to addressing housing need, offer New Jersey a generational opportunity to change housing policy, produce homes, and reshape the housing landscape in a lasting way.
NEW JERSEY HOUSING AND MORTGAGE FINANCE AGENCY (NJHMFA)
NJHMFA, an affiliate of DCA, is a statewide and national leader in providing and advocating for affordable housing and homeownership. The Agency provides financing to developers to create quality homes and provides mortgage loans and down payment and closing cost assistance to help homebuyers achieve their dream of homeownership. For more information about NJHMFA programs, visit njhousing.gov.