Landlord Waives Rent For Hundreds Of Tenants Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

As the novel coronavirus crisis continues to ravage the country, heartwarming acts of kindness from various places are being reported as well.

A New York City landlord has waived the April rent for 200 tenants. “I want everybody to be healthy. That’s the whole thing,” Mario Salerno said.

Mario Salerno

Salerno, 59, owns roughly 80 apartments across Williamsburg and Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

He said that he took this decision after some of his tenants told him that they could not afford to pay the rent because they lost their jobs due to the pandemic.

On March 30, he posted a notice on the front doors of all of his buildings announcing, “Due to the recent pandemic of Coronavirus COVID-19 affecting all of us, please note I am waiving rent for the month for April.”

One of his tenants who was out of work as she was ordered to shut down her hair salon called him, “He’s Superman. He’s a wonderful man,” Kaitlyn Guteski said, “It’s a game-changer.”

Salerno said he is aware that it will affect his earning for the month but he added, “For me, it was more important for people’s health and worrying about who could put food on whose table,” he said. “I say don’t worry about paying me, worry about your neighbor and worry about your family.”

He said he hopes other landlords will do the same as well and they are. We had earlier reported about how Nathan Nichols, who owns two units in Portland, Maine, told his tenants several weeks ago that they don’t have to worry about paying the rent for April.

In San Diego, California, Jeff Larabee’s 18 tenants were told that they would not have to pay rent for the next three months. He said he took this decision after three of his tenants reached out to him and said they were concerned about making their payments.


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