Fresh Start Loan Overview

The Fresh Start Loan Program provides 0%-interest, no-fee loans of up to $20,000 to clients working with select financial counseling organizations as a means to pay down high-interest debt and regain financial stability.

To be eligible for a Fresh Start Loan, you must be working with and referred by a financial counselor at one of the organizations listed below. Please contact one of the organizations directly if you wish to begin working with a financial counselor.

Neighborhood Trust Financial Partners (NTFP)
Serving residents of NYC’s five boroughs
Contact: Elio Pichardo
Email: epichardo@neighborhoodtrust.org
Phone: 212-927-5771 ext 207

New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG)
Please Note: NYLAG is currently at capacity and unable to schedule appointments for the month of December. 
Serving residents of NYC’s five boroughs

Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation (Restoration Plaza)
Serving residents of Brooklyn
Contact: Earlene Greene, Manager, Financial Counseling/Coaching Programs
Email: financialempowerment@restorationplaza.org
Phone: 929-432-3332

Eligibility

In addition to working with a financial counselor at one of the organizations listed above, loan applicants must meet the following general HFLS eligibility criteria:

  • Reside in NYC’s five boroughs, Westchester, or Long Island
  • Locate one qualified guarantor (for a loan of $7,500 or less) or two qualified guarantors (for a loan of more than $7,500).
    • Guarantors must reside in NY, NJ, or CT; have annual pre-tax household income of at least $50,000; and have good credit (based on an HFLS review of their recent credit history).
  • Have annual pre-tax household income at or below the income limit for their household size.
    • If your annual pre-tax household income is slightly above the limit in the chart below, please discuss your specific situation with your financial counselor; you may still qualify for an HFLS loan.

Loan Process

Please do NOT contact HFLS with questions regarding the Fresh Start Loan Program, as HFLS cannot provide you with the online application or determine whether you are eligible. The financial counselor you work with will be able to determine your eligibility for a Fresh Start Loan after reviewing and discussing your financial situation with you. If you are eligible, they will provide you with additional information and a link to an online application.