A New Jersey bill encourages families to own homes, flipping houses.

East Orange, NJ — It’s a Housing Title No One Wants — New Jersey often has the highest foreclosure rates in the nation.

A new bill will help families keep their homes.

Ezra Turner, 55, knows the pain of homelessness all too well. In the year In 2018, business problems led to the closing of the Irvington house, which was unable to afford to stop.

“Once everything went through, it was like, wow, we’re out, and now we’re renting,” he told CBS2’s Christina Phan.

New Jersey consistently ranks among the states with the highest foreclosure rates: 1 in every 2,564 units.

A coalition of city mayors urged the governor on Friday to sign legislation that would help families protect ownership and keep out big investors.

“As mayor, every day here in our city, our residents are making phone calls and trying to find ways to protect their homes,” said East Orange Mayor Ted Green.

The Community Asset Protection Bill cuts households’ required deposit from 20% to 3.5% and gives buyers two more months to pay off their debts.

Five types of people qualify: the homeowner, the homeowner’s next of kin, non-profit community development corporations, as well as renters and other buyers, who commit to living in the neighborhood for seven years.

Assemblywoman Britney Timberlake said it puts property ownership in the hands of community members who want to live here.

Timberlake is one of the bill’s supporters, and Gov. Phil Murphy’s office has expressed concern that corporations could become nonprofits. But she says the cleanup bill would close those gaps.

Turner has since been able to buy a home with his mother and son. He said this rule would have protected him from long-term heart disease.

He said this would help many individuals.

CBS2 reached out to Murphy, and he said his office does not comment on pending legislation.

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