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Hockessin Community News
  • Apartment Angels offers free rent to needy Delawareans

  • The Delaware Apartment Association will launch a new program that provides needy families and individuals with six months of free rent at a New Castle County apartment complex, beginning this December.


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  • The Delaware Apartment Association will launch a new program that provides needy families and individuals with six months of free rent at a New Castle County apartment complex, beginning this December.
    Apartment Angels THP (transitional housing program) is a non-profit organization designed to offer free rental housing, over the course of six months, to those who have fallen on tough times, said Kevin Wolfgang, president of the Delaware Apartment Association. Open enrollment in the program ends on Oct. 31.
    "Nothing is more agonizing than seeing hardworking people lose their home," he said. "Our association felt compelled to give back.”
    The program was created to reduce the normal financial burden of housing, he said, so that participants will have time to reposition themselves financially, in the workforce and with regard to their rental housing history. However, he said the program does not cover the cost of utilities. And it was not designed to help people who have habitual evictions, he added.
    This December, five families or individuals will be temporarily placed into one of five participating apartment complexes in New Castle County, including Whitney Apartments and Mid-Atlantic Realty, Wolfgang said. Landlords jumped at the chance to help those in need, he said.
    "It was an easy sell," he said. "I told them about the program and they jumped at the opportunity."
    Wolfgang said home foreclosures have overshadowed displaced renters, as there is a misconception that renters cannot build equity at an apartment.
    "Lost in the media frenzy regarding home foreclosures is the fact that many renters are also losing their homes," he said. "I think the viewpoint of the media is that people didn't have equity in their apartments. But they had their hearts invested in it."
    Wolfgang said renters purchase furniture and pay for security deposits, all of which equates to equity. As the program progresses, he said he would like to incorporate more landlords into Apartment Angels.
    But for now, he and his team look forward to launching the initiative.
    "We take great pride in this because it's difficult for everyone in this economy," he said.

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