Updated 4/15/24

Below is a breakdown of how property owners can apply to the Woodstock Lease to Locals Incentive Program. Please read these instructions closely, as it is important you take each of these steps to qualify for the grant program.

Woodstock Lease to Locals Program Details

  1. Property requirements:
    1. The property must be located within Woodstock, VT town limits.
    2. The Property cannot have been leased long-term in the past 12 months, even if it was on a month-to-month basis.
    3. The Property must be a single-family home, condo, townhome, multi-family home of up to 4 units, or a single room in an owner-occupied property.
      1. Multi-family homes greater than 4 units, mobile homes, hotels, and motels are not eligible for the Program.
    4. The property cannot be on the market for sale.
    5. The property cannot be rented to immediate family members. 
    6. The Property Owner must sign and follow Economic Development Commission (EDC) Full Terms and Conditions.
    7. The maximum rent per month (excluding utilities) that can be charged is based on unit size (see below chart). 
       
  2. Incentive amount:
    1. Incentives are based on lease length and unit size:    
    2. Incentive amount is capped at three (3) Qualified Tenants.
    3. In the case of a multi-family property, only one unit within the property will be eligible to qualify for the grant.
    4. Property Owner may only participate in the Program one time. 
  3. Qualified Household and Tenant criteria:
    1. At least 50% of the household must be a Qualified Tenant.
    2. A Qualified Tenant is over 18, not of blood relation to the property owner, and works or will works an average of 25 hours or more per week with a business, organization, or public or private entity located in the Qualified Area.
      1. Qualified Area is defined as Woodstock, Barnard, Bridgewater, Pomfret, Reading, or Hartland.
    3. Dependent children will count as one (1) additional Qualified Tenant, regardless of the number of children present.
  4.  Applications for the Lease to Locals program must be submitted within 60 days of the start of the lease.
  5. The Lease to Locals program is focused on housing creation, as such, each property may participate in the Lease to Locals program one time. There are no additional incentives after year one.

Woodstock Lease to Locals Program Process

  1. Determine if you are going to rent seasonally (5-11 months) or long-term (12+ months), list the property for rent, and start screening tenants.
    1. To post your property on our Listings Page and connect with renters in our database, ask your Placemate representative about the self-listing feature. 
      1. Note, renters in our database have not pre-applied for the Lease to Locals program. They will still need to be qualified based on the steps laid out in this intake packet.
    2. Additional listing site suggestions are at the bottom of this page.
  2. Verify that the group you select qualifies for the Lease to Locals program before passing them onto Placemate as directed in step 4. Required documents from each tenant (regardless of qualification) 18 years or older:
    1. A copy of a government issued photo ID
    2. Employment documentation (any one of the following 3 options, as applicable):
      1. Two (2) pay stub covering the most recent 30-day period, OR;
      2. A signed employer or offer letter that includes the following details:
        1. Employer name, logo, and address
        2. Name of employee
        3. Anticipated start date (if new offer) or when they started originally
        4. Number of hours (ie; full time, 40 hours week / seasonal, 20 hours week)
        5. Location of where they are working
        6. Name, signature of manager / HR, and date signed; OR
      3. If self-employed, required documents include:
        1. A valid business license registered to a local address
        2. If the business has been operational for more than 1 year 
          1. Most recent tax returns, OR; 
        3. If the business has been operating for less than one year, is off the books, or tenant is self employed via gig work
          1. Internal P&L, OR;
          2. Employer letter, OR;
          3. Recent Contracts that show volume of work/pay
  3. Sign a lease once you have verified that the selected tenant group meets program qualifications.
    1. If you have any questions about your prospective tenants’ eligibility or documents, let us know and we can help with verification.
  4. Email your Placemate rep your tenants’ contact information (name, email, phone, number of children – if applicable), so they can send them a Lease to Locals tenant application to collect the documents described above. It helps if you let them know we’ll be reaching out.
  5. Once your tenants have completed their Lease to Locals application and we verify eligibility, we will send you the property owner application, which is a 2-step process:
    1. Complete a Property Owner Lease Summary form, which gathers basic info about your property and lease, and requires that you upload a fully executed Lease Agreement along with a Fire Safety Certificate.
      1. New rentals need to request a “Change of Use” for their rental property from the State of Vermont Fire Safety. It can be requested via paper form or this web portal.
    2. After we review these materials, we will send you the Property Owner Grant Application which includes:
      1. Property and lease detail attestation
      2. Preview of your expected incentive amount
      3. Check request form 
      4. W-9 
      5. EDC Contract
  6. After we review your completed documents and verify the tenants moved in, we will submit your application to the Town of Woodstock. You can expect to receive the first half of your incentive payment mailed directly from the Town within 45 days of submission.
  7. At the midpoint of a long-term lease, Placemate will check in with both the tenants and owner to ensure that the terms of the lease are being upheld.
  8. At the end of the lease, Placemate will check in with both the tenants and owner to verify compliance and submit a request to the Town for the second half of the incentive payment.
  9. If at any point during the lease, your tenant group changes or the tenants move out, you must contact your Placemate rep to let them know.

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Listing Language
If you still need to secure tenants, here is some language you can put in your ad to let interested renters know you are participating in the Lease to Locals Program.
Note, property owners must comply with the State and Federal Fair Housing Act which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), familial status, or disability.

The owner of this property is participating in the Woodstock Lease to Locals Program aimed at unlocking existing homes for local employee needs. As such, interested tenants must meet the following qualifications to be considered for this home:
1) Work for an Employer in the Region – At least half of the adults over 18 in the household (related or unrelated) must work or will work an average of 25 hours or more per week with a business, organization, or public or private entity located in the Woodstock, Barnard, Bridgewater, Pomfret, Reading, or Hartland area.

Lease Template
You can use any lease you wish so long as your terms meet the program requirements. Placemate cannot legally prepare the lease for you. 

Zillow provides free lease agreements that you might consider using – you can find them at this link. Please note, you and your tenants will have to create a profile on Zillow to use their services.

Sites to List Your Property On: 
The following websites are used by local workforce members looking for housing. These would be great places to list your property, but you may list your rental unit wherever and however you wish. Each of these options requires that you monitor their various communication channels.

EDC Housing Advisor
To cast a wider net, feel free to email EDC Housing Advisor at: woodstockhousingadvisor@gmail.com, and your listing will be shared with local employers, schools, and town employees.

Listerv / Woodstock Community Crier
To SUBSCRIBE, send a blank email to mail to: woodstock-subscribe@lists.vitalcommunities.org. To POST, send an email to: woodstock@lists.vitalcommunities.org

Vermont Landlord Association | Rental Properties
You must create an account to post here.

Zillow 
The housing site with the largest reach. A possibility of numerous non-responsive tenant applicants.

Facebook Marketplace
You must have a Facebook account and/or be a member of a specific housing group to post here. Monitor and respond to comments/direct messages to ensure you see inquiries come in. 

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