I can’t imagine what it feels like to not have enough money to pay the rent or the mortgage.  Making that decision to either put food on the table for your family or purchase your medication.  Financial hardships create so much anxiety, sometimes the results from your choices come with a big cost to you and your family, even though you feel at the time they are correct.  No one should ever be forced into that position.

Dino Flammia, Townsquare Media NJ

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Covid19 forced many of us to make decisions we didn’t like.  Businesses had to furlough or let go of many employees to survive.  Many even had to close, some permanently.

Getty Images. Peter Macdiarmid

Reprieves were given to utility bills, student loans, car payments, WI-FI, etc. Landlords were bound to allow their tenants to delay paying rent. 

Credit: Google via Google Maps

Banks were allowing customers to differ payments and wave late fees during the pandemic.  All these pauses helped many consumers cope, but also stopped the flow of normal business.  Money stopped flowing, hurting everyone.

Thankfully, back in March of 2020, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed an executive order allowing the state's eviction moratorium.

Governor Murphy signed several laws at Jammin’ Crepes in Princeton, on April 12 (Josue Lora/ NJ Governor's Office)

This allowed renters to be able to stay in their homes without being forced out due to financial hardships, for as long as the state of New Jersey was still enforcing its public emergency posture.

Now that the status of that emergency has been upgraded, thousands of people face evictions.  A concern Ocean County Director Gary Quinn is facing in his municipality, which is why he began the Ocean County Residential Emergency Rental Assistance Program.  This needed program will free up $18 million from the U.S. Treasury Department. Qualified households in Ocean County can receive a grant valued at up to $10,644.  This money can be paid to their landlords directly to satisfy back rent due.

Quinn says…

“The purpose of the program is to try to help low- and moderate-income residents that live in the county, who are behind on their rent strictly due to situations that they were put in by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Applications for assistance are being accepted here.

A call center is also available to contact.  That phone number is 833-753-9671.

Say what you will about the many programs offering solutions to people who really need them.   Some are good ideas, others not so much.  Take advantage of these programs if you’re in need.  Just don’t “take advantage”.  If you’re not in trouble, spread the word to your neighbor, and let’s work together to get through this.

We've all had lots of downtime during the pandemic.  Maybe you used it to take inventory of your stuff.  Do you have any of these items?

The Top 10 Things Found in a Typical New Jersey Home