From New York City Mayor Eric Adams' press release:
New York City Mayor Eric Adams, New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) Commissioner Adolfo Carrión Jr., and New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC) President Eric Enderlin today announced that New York City households with housing vouchers will no longer undergo credit checks when selected for affordable housing — immediately accelerating the process of entering new, affordable homes for over 4,000 families every year. For New Yorkers with rental assistance vouchers, undergoing credit checks and providing rental history represent unnecessary barriers to obtaining affordable housing, since their ability to pay rent is guaranteed by either their qualification for a rental subsidy or by the rental subsidy connected to the affordable unit.
Today’s major action builds on significant steps the Adams administration has taken, particularly as part of Mayor Adams’ “Housing Our Neighbors” blueprint, to get New Yorkers into permanent affordable homes more quickly. Over the last year, Mayor Adams has expanded eligibility for City Fighting Homelessness and Eviction Prevention Supplement (CityFHEPS) housing vouchers and eliminated both the 90-day waiting period for families in shelters to access CityFHEPS and the four-month period many New Yorkers in shelter were waiting before being evaluated for any permanent housing option. The Adams administration also connected more New Yorkers with CityFHEPS vouchers to permanent affordable homes in Fiscal Year 2023 than in any year in the program’s history, while creating the second-most new affordable homes and the most new supportive homes and homes for New Yorkers formerly homelessness in the city’s history. Mayor Adams continues to tackle the city’s underlying housing shortage — allowing New Yorkers to use CityFHEPS vouchers anywhere in New York state and unveiling an historic proposal last month to update 60-year-old zoning laws and build more than 100,000 additional new homes.
“Since I became mayor, our administration has been relentless in taking on the city’s affordable housing crisis from every angle, and we are taking another critical step forward today,” said Mayor Adams. “Every New Yorker knows we don’t have enough affordable homes, but once you find one, the city should do everything in its power to give you the keys as quickly as possible. Once again, we are taking bold action to make that a reality by no longer requiring New Yorkers to undergo a credit check when selected for affordable housing. This one change will help more than 4,000 New York families move more quickly into a home and take the next step towards building a more supported life.”
“In the midst of a housing and affordability crisis, we must use every tool at our disposal to ease the burden on working families so they can live and thrive in New York City,” said Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development, and Workforce Maria Torres-Springer. “Removing credit checks from the housing voucher process will speed up the time it takes for families to move into new homes, providing stability and security to thousands of households each year. This action will improve tenants’ access to affordable housing in a timely manner, including for those experiencing homelessness, who so often have greater barriers to entry in the housing market.”
“If an individual or a family holds a housing voucher, they should be able to secure their new home with as smooth a process as possible,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom. “Today’s announcement cuts additional red tape by eliminating credit checks for voucher holders and enables them to transition more quickly into stable housing. It is yet another step the Adams administration is taking to realize our goal of making a permanent home a reality for every New Yorker.”
“Credit checks create a massive and unnecessary obstacle, disproportionately harming low-income New Yorkers. For people with bad or no credit, the elimination of credit checks could mean the difference between having a home and being homeless,” said HPD Commissioner Carrión. “Eliminating credit checks for voucher holders is an important step towards providing fair and efficient housing to New York City’s most vulnerable residents.”