Landlord Risk Mitigation Fund FAQs
FAQs For Landlords and Property Managers
Q: If the landlord has a concern about a tenant’s rent payment, behavior, lease agreement or any other issue, who should the landlord talk to first?
A: The landlord should first contact the tenant directly and explain the issue, thus resolving the concern. If the landlord is unable to reach a resolution, he or she should contact the tenant’s supportive service worker to further discuss the issue. The supportive service worker will then work with the landlord and the tenant in trying to find a solution to the problem.
Q: If mediation is needed between a landlord and a tenant, what steps does the landlord need to take?
A: The landlord should first contact the tenant’s supportive service worker. The supportive service worker will connect with the tenant and the landlord to assist in finding the root of the problem and aid in resolving any issues. If the concerns are still apparent and the supportive service worker is unable to help with resolution, please contact the FM Coalition by Email or call 701-936-7171 and we can help set up the use of free mediation services through partner services.
Q: Once a landlord accepts a participant of the program, are they placed on any public lists?
A: No, all information regarding the rental agency and landlord is held confidential. If a landlord is interested in renting to another LRMF participant, please contact the Coalition by calling 701-936-7171.
Q: In what circumstances does a landlord receive reimbursement from the fund?
A: The landlord only receives reimbursement (up to $3000) from the fund if a tenant violates the lease by abandoning the unit or causing damage above and beyond the damage deposit within their first two years of residency. The landlord first pursues recompense from the tenant (with help of the supportive service worker) and then applies to the fund for reimbursement. Damages and infestations must be documented. The fund will NOT cover late rent payments while the tenant is still residing in the unit. It will only reimburse a maximum of two late rent payments if the tenant is evicted or if the tenant abandons the unit. Any late rent issues should be addressed with the supportive service worker as soon as possible. Please visit the Coalition website at fmhomless.org for a complete description of the program policies and procedures.
Q: What types of services do the supportive service workers (SSW) provide?
A: The SSW is responsible for assisting the tenant/household with check-in to ensure the tenant has the necessary information needed for housing success. The SSW must complete monthly visits with the tenant/household but can provide as many visits as needed. These visits may include assistance in budgeting and finance, cooking, cleaning, apartment etiquette, or any other life skills needed to be a successful renter. The SSW is also responsible for checking in with the landlord at least quarterly to ensure the renting process is running smoothly. The SSW agrees to follow the tenant/household for the length of time the tenant is enrolled in the LRMF program (up to two years).
FAQs for Case Managers and Consumers/Tenants
Q: Are the tenants responsible for directly contacting the landlord or does the FM Coalition find a landlord and then connect landlord and tenant?
A: At this time, the potential tenant is responsible for locating a landlord with the support and assistance of the case manager. The Coalition director is willing to speak with potential landlords, if needed. As the program grows we hope to be able to help provide matches.
Q: Are homeless individuals with a criminal backgrounds and felonies eligible for this program?
A: Yes. Length of time since incarceration is requested on the application form.
Q: After the two years does the case manager still work with the tenant?
A: That would be negoatiated betweent the case manager and the tenant. The fund is only available for two years.
Q: How frequently does the tenant have to meet with their case manager?
A: That depends on how long the tenant has been housed and how they are managing that housing. For the first three to six months, weekly or monthly site visits are expected. The Tenant is expected to comply with the site visit scheduled they plan with the Case Manager.
Q: Once one fills out an application where are the applications sent to be reviewed?
A: They are sent to the Coalition: Email preferred. The applications are processed and forwarded to the advisory committee for a decision. The process usually takes about a week.
Q: Does the Coalition already have a list of landlords that are willing to participate in this program?
A: No. We do not supply names of landlords nor do we divulge names of tenants. As the program becomes more established we hope to be able to help match tenants and landlords.
Q: Do you have to be staying at a shelter to obtain an agency recommendation in the application process?
A: No, you have to have a willing case manager, be in need of new housing and be at risk of homelessness without the support of the program. (You cannot apply for a unit you have already leased.)
Q: Are expectations of landlord and tenants going to be unison across all participants in this program?
A: No, each is a case by case agreement.
Q: Once a landlord agrees to participate are they put on a lenient landlord list?
A: No, that information is held confidential.
Q: Does the landlord have a say in who their tenant is?
A: Yes, the landlord always has the right to refuse to rent to someone. However, if the landlord agrees to participate in the program, they are agreeing to waive some of their rules (e.g., no past evictions or no past felonies) FOR THE ENROLLED HOUSEHOLD ONLY. They are also agreeing to pursue mediation and case management intervention before moving to evict if there are issues other than abandonment of the unit. NOTE: The tenant household should be asked to keep their participation in the program confidential as well.
Q: How does the landlord receive the money from the Coalition? Do they receive $1,500 in a check all at once each year?
A: The landlord only receives money from the fund if a tenant violates by lease by abandoning the unit or causing damage above and beyond the damage deposit. The landlord first purses recompense from the tenant (with the help of the case manager) and then applies to the fund for reimbursement, not to exceed $3,000. Damages and insect infestations must be documented.
Q: Who is more likely to be accepted into this program first? Is there an order of preference?
A: Applications are processed as they are received until such time as that becomes unwieldy, at which time applications would be processed based on VI-SPDAT scores (vulnerability).