Veritas Investments Announces New Remission Program for Uncovered Portions of Rent Arrears Owed by Residential Tenants

Veritas Investments – SF’s largest landlord, which owns and manages some 250 residential properties in the city – announced this week that it will not force tenants to pay their past due rent caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In what is described as a “one-of-a-kind rent relief program” by a property management company of its size, Veritas announced on Tuesday that it would forgive the uncovered portion of a tenant’s unpaid rent – to provided that he requests it. rent relief fund before the deadline set by the state of January 31.

“We like to think that this gives our residents a holiday gift in advance, taking away one more concern,” said Jeff Jerden, COO of Veritas, in a press release featuring his “Rent-relief Backstop” program. (Although the idea of ​​portraying someone’s ability to continue occupying their home as an “early vacation gift” sounds incredibly Oregonian.)

“Veritas has focused on the laser to help our residents stay safely housed throughout this unprecedented crisis, including having the nation’s largest eviction moratorium and providing residents with direct help from several million dollars to date, ”continues Jerden. “Our new Rent Relief Backstop is the first to provide a safety net behind the state’s ERAP relief, removing all barriers for those who may be eligible to apply.

According to Veritas, tenants who apply for the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program but are denied funds to cover accumulated rent debt due to a lack of income will have those debts resolved by GreenTree Property Management, an affiliate of Veritas. The aforementioned company will correspond to the maximum period of coverage of 18 months offered by the State Rent Relief Program; debts that are not covered by these funds will have to be paid by the tenant to avoid eviction and penalties.

Veritas also said it will not apply an annual rent increase to residents who have a “pending or approved rental assistance request.” GreenTree will also continue to waive late fees for residents who are in the process of applying for or receiving rent relief funds.

But news of the rental relief program comes after a controversial year between the property management company and the tenants who occupy its building. According to NBC Bay Area, the Veritas Tenants Association (VTA) has announced a strike to suspend requests for state rent relief to call on “business owners,” in an effort to limit additional government funds to cover the rent debt of Veritas Investments.

During the strike, VTA urged Veritas to use previous state government rent relief funds – a figure that stood at nearly $ 6 million – to collectively cover the amount of rent arrears. owed by tenants to Veritas, which, at that time, was approximately $ 5.7 million. VTA recently issued a statement applauding the new program, noting that it was a “partial victory” in their efforts; Striking VTA members continue to call on Veritas to negotiate rent relief for tenants affected by the pandemic; striking members will also vote before the end of the year on whether to continue the strike until January.

All Veritas residents must have received an email or paper document announcing the program. Those who still have questions can call the company’s resident services for assistance at (415) 347-8600 or send an email to their contact.

As usual: The San Francisco Tenants Union remains a great resource for tenants facing evictions and rent increases, especially considering that many of Veritas Investment’s residential properties fall under the San Francisco Rent Control Ordinance.

Related: SF’s biggest owner insists he won’t be long in selling his 67 rent-controlled buildings

Pelosi Pushes Veritas Investments to Repay $ 3.6 Million PPP Loan; They will now reimburse the amount

Top photo: Property managed by RentSFNow, which is the residential commercial business of Veritas Investments. (Photo: courtesy RentSFNow)

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