Erie County has launched a new program aimed at incentivizing landlords to provide more affordable housing to disadvantaged tenants.

The program incentivizes landlords to rent their properties to people in in Housing and Urban Development (HUD) programs.

Those individuals include people with poor credit, unstable incomes, and other disadvantages that make it difficult to get an apartment.

Through the initiative, landlords receive a $1,000 bonus for the first tenant they rent to through HUD, and $500 for each additional tenant.

The program also includes a $1,000 payment if the tenant leaves before their lease is up, and up to $2,000 for any damage to the apartment.

According to Erie County's housing program director Peter Burke, the lack of affordable housing in Erie has become a major issue.

"There's not a lot," said Burke. "We have waiting lists. We have people in programs waiting to be funded with subsidies, but they are on waiting lists because we can't find affordable housing for them and some of those waiting lists are really growing."

Landlords interested in participating in the housing program can call Erie County Care Management at 814-528-0600.

The contact person at Erie County Care Management is Sean O’Neill. He can also be reached by email at [email protected].