Landlords Can Benefit from Housing Mobility Initiative

(Boston) – Local landlords are now able to participate in a program that helps address the misconceptions and challenges of renting to families with federal housing subsidies.  SNO Mass is a program developed and funded by the Massachusetts Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD) that supports DHCD Housing Choice Voucher families with children to move to communities with high-quality schools, parks and open space, and healthy, safe environments.

SNO Mass, administered in Greater Boston by Metro Housing|Boston, has identified “Opportunity Areas” throughout Massachusetts that offer high-quality schools, parks and open spaces, and other amenities that help children grow and thriveSNO Mass provides important benefits to landlords by helping connect Metro Housing’s eligible, pre-screened tenants with rental properties in these neighborhoods.

“While we know that property owners are in the business to make a return on their investment, a side benefit of renting to a SNO Mass family is that the landlord is helping a family with children have a chance for a better life,” said Alexa Shabecoff, Manager of SNO Mass. “Voucher holders pay only 30% of their income towards rent and the rest is paid by Metro Housing. If a tenant’s income decreases, the portion that Metro Housing pays goes up, making a voucher holder a safe bet irrespective of their income or credit.”

SNO Mass benefits for landlords include:

  • Assurance of prompt payment of rent subsidy each month.
  • Protection from tenant financial hardships as the voucher can absorb income loss.
  • $500 signing bonus + additional $500 after the first year if a landlord renews the lease with the original SNO Mass tenant, has another SNO Mass participant move in, or needs to make repairs to the unit that exceed the security deposit.
  • Potentially higher rent subsidy than has been offered by other housing authorities.
  • Ready pool of pre-screened applicants who have access to financial assistance to help them settle into their new community.
  • Decreased vacancy rates and reduced tenant turnover and related expenses.
  • Streamlined leasing processes with rapid turn-around times.
  • Single point of contact at Metro Housing for any questions/issues that may arise during leasing up and for two years afterwards.


“As property owners, our goal is to not only rent out our apartments, but to also help families seeking a safe and affordable home,” said Suzanne Nethercote, a local landlord who is participating in SNO Mass. “When we have a vacancy, I can contact Metro Housing with the knowledge that we will have the right fit for our apartment. The SNO Mass Mobility Specialist helped us process all the paperwork and met our timelines for inspections. It was great having that contact to help streamline the process.”

“I am so grateful to Metro Housing and to my case worker Michael, who really made my move happen,” said Emilia Rivera-Galarza, a SNO Mass participant. “I am a single mom and I am trying to set a good example for my son. I want to eventually get off Section 8 and the SNO Mass program is providing me with the tools I need to make that happen. This has been a very smooth transition for me and my son.”

Landlords who are interested in the program should contact

About Metro Housing|Boston

Serving more than 25,000 households annually, Metro Housing|Boston is dedicated to mobilizing wide-ranging resources to provide innovative and personalized services that assist families in avoiding homelessness, maintain housing stability, and achieve economic security. With more than 30 years’ experience piloting and implementing housing programs, it has solidified their position as an industry-leading expert on navigating the affordable housing field. Metro Housing|Boston is committed to making sure that every person in Greater Boston will always have a place to call home. Visit, , or follow on Twitter at @MetroHousingBos.

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