Wake County has launched a new initiative to help expand the pool of affordable housing available, while also bringing financial benefits to the partners who provide them.
Lease 2 Home, which is part of the Landlord Engagement Unit within Wake County’s Housing Affordability and Community Revitalization Department, aims to increase the supply by offering incentives to housing provider partners, like landlords and property owners, to offer units at affordable prices for qualified tenants.
“Many people seeking an affordable place to live are already facing an uphill battle with barriers like lower incomes and a lack of options in the community,” said Wake County Commissioner Vickie Adamson. “Lease 2 Home will help connect them with a trustworthy housing provider that can offer a place to call home within their budget, while also making sure our property owners and landlords have the financial means to help the units remain affordable.”
The program plans to bring on more than 50 property owners and hopes to create around 300 additional affordable home options within the first year.
The benefits for housing providers to partner with Lease 2 Home include:
- Up to $1,000 to cover any damage above the security deposit and standard turn over costs;
- Up to two months of rental payments if unit is vacant for more than 30 days and assistance with new referral placement;
- $500 for every lease signed and $750 if the landlord accepts a Housing Voucher program; and
- $1,000 for lease renewals.
Once housing provider partners become members of Lease 2 Home, available property information is listed privately for affordable housing organizations who help clients locate a unit, expediting the time between when someone receives a subsidy and when they move into permanent housing.
Rental homes eligible for Lease 2 Home must be operated in compliance with local, state and federal non-discrimination and fair housing laws. They must also be operated in compliance with Wake County and other code provisions for fire, safety, zoning, unit legalization and property maintenance. All Lease 2 Home housing provider partners must attend yearly training sessions to qualify.
Currently, Wake County has an estimated shortage of 56,195 units affordable to low-income families. Since 2019, Wake County has preserved or created more than 2,500 units of affordable housing.
The county is obligating $1.1 million to kickstart the new program. Housing providers interested in partnering with Lease 2 Home can visit wakegov.com/lease2home to learn more.