Williamsburg landlord Mario Salerno is waiving rent for all of his tenants for April 2020.

Lifelong Williamsburg resident and landlord to hundreds of tenants, Mario Salerno announced on Monday that he will waive April’s rent for all of his residential and commercial tenants.

Salerno’s gas station and auto body shop at 451 Lormimer St.

Salerno who is 59-years-old was born on Metropolitan Avenue and his father started a gas station at 451 Lorimer St. in 1959, which his family still operates as Salerno Auto Body Shop

Over the years Salerno acquired a series of buildings primarily in Williamsburg and estimates that he has approximately 200 tenants in 80 apartments: “I had a lot of people telling me they don’t know how they will pay next month’s rent,” he said.

Mario (right) with sons Sal (left) and Mario (center) in front of their auto body shop in Williamsburg.

Salerno grew concerned that his tenants would not be able to afford necessities on top of their monthly rent as all non-essential businesses in New York have shutdown to slow the coronavirus pandemic leading to a boom in unemployment.

“I’m really not concerned about the rent right now, I’m concerned about peoples’ health. Not only are we up against an epidemic, these poor people have no jobs and they’re worried about getting sick. I didn’t think it was much on a person like me, who god was good to, to help them all out,” he said.


On Monday, a letter was posted in the entrance of Salerno’s buildings with the announcement that April’s rent will be waived for all tenants: : “Due to the recent pandemic of coronavirus COVID-19 affecting all of us, please note I am waiving rent for the month of April 2020,” the letter states.

The letter Salerno shared with his tenants.


“They’re all very appreciative. I told them ‘make sure you help your neighbor,'” Salerno said.

Asked if he’s taking extra precautions at his buildings because of the virus, he said his team is vigilant with cleaning and sterilization.

“Me, as a landlord, I make sure I clean the buildings daily, I send my men there every night and we make sure we clean and sterilize for everyone’s safety.”

Salerno owns residential buildings on Maujer and Lorimer Streets, but said the offer extends to his commercial tenants such as the owner of a hair salon on Metropolitan Avenue which notified Salerno that the business might have to close for good due to the sustained drop in revenue.

Other tenants who didn’t lose their jobs offered to pay April’s rent as usual, and in some instances even offered to cover their out-of-work roommates’ rent.

Salerno said that he hopes everyone in NYC will work together where they can to get past the pandemic.

“If everyone could stay home, take care each other; whoever is fortunate to work, please try to help the person who can’t put food on the table.”

Join the Conversation


  1. Having had the pleasure of doing business with back in the days ….it doesn’t surprise me you would do that with your tenents…I always got a kick speaking to your dad and how he looked up to his boy. God bless you

  2. Mario has always been a community person, he is a staple of the corner of Lorimer and Maujer, you rock Mario, Sal must be looking down at you with a smile. You rock

  3. This is what NYC is about-helping others when it matters and even when it doesn’t. It should be what America is about but too many are concerned about themselves and no one else. Mr. Salerno is a truly decent individual.

  4. This man is amazing, he has always helped anyone when needed, including me. I was a single mother with a broken down car. Mario towed me and fixed my car over and over again. All he asked was that you go to church and say a prayer as payment. There are hundreds of these stories.
    God Bless you Mario.

  5. Wow! I’m so proud of Mario! I know him my whole life. We belonged to the same church and went to the same Catholic School. He’s a guy who’s worked hard, as did his Father, and now his son. They’ve always been honest, fair and respectful. Additionally, Mario went to mass a Immacculate Conception Church (a.k.a. St. Mary’s) every single Sunday! For all I know, he might have even gone on weekdays, as well. I’m so proud of him for allowing his heart to supersede his wallet! God bless you, Mario! I know your Dad is smiling down on you!

  6. Mario is a great compassionate giving person. He has always helped people and I have known Mario since we were kids. We have been there for each other and I am always Grateful to him. There should be more people in the world like Mario! The world would be a better place!
    He is just one of a kind. His sons also are very nice just like their father.

  7. I’ve gone to Salerno’s for years to get my NYS Inspection done and they are always so friendly, nice and respectful. They also saved my friend and I when we got a flat tire VERY late at night and would have been stuck in the street if they weren’t there to help. This guy is a GOOD man, with a heart of gold.

  8. That’s amazing!! Mario always looked out for us especially the neighborhood kids( I was one of them from Anchor Auto Parts “Tee’s Daughter”) He even helped alot if us get off the streets. He always cares! I’m pretty proud of Mario and his family they all go take care of Family and thy neighbors. God bless you Mario and family !!!

    Love Always The Acosta Family

  9. Your a fucking great guy and I get my gas from you. The lady with the yellow motorcycle. Bless your soul. We need more people like you in this world.

  10. Mario is a great man i know him for many years took my car to him to fix or do inspection etc. I havent gone back 2 him for over a year cause i no longer have a car but ill will always trust him He is the greatest mechanic i kno and can trust God Bless Him Always

  11. This is so kind it shows what a great person he is. My landlord last month told me I had to move because he is selling my apartment this devastated me. I have been in my building 25 years and this is home to me.he is giving everyone 3 months to get out. I can not afford to buy my apartment. And was not asked.if you need an extension after three months he is charging an extra $250 per month. Reading this made me so happy for his tenants.may god bless you for your act of kindness.

  12. God we’ll reward you. And God Bless you.
    I Used to live in Williamsburg on Humboldt Street and grand st.
    Miss the old neighborhood

  13. I wish there were more landlords with the heart this man has. God bless you always and your tenants are so blessed to have you as their landlord.

  14. Why now thts a good really theres not alot of landlords out there like you,GBY n stay safe n thk god for persons like you.

  15. A great feel good story. For those who say New Yorkers are nasty people. There are many with good hearts. Well done Mario. From a someone born and raised in Williamsburg .

  16. God Bless you and all your friends, family , neighbors and your team for all your dedication and continued support.

    Thank you always, stay safe and sound

    Tina Messina

  17. As a Salerno myself, this makes me proud! Thank you Mario. Thank you for being so kind and generous. I don’t believe we are related, but you know, if you are Sicilian and a Salerno, in Italia that pretty much makes us famiglia. (btw my grandparents were Giuseppe and Maria Salerno from Marineo, PA and Giuseppe’s brother was Francis)

  18. He the best and most kindest person I have ever known. He sent the right example to everyone struggling through there demanding times. I’m glad he is settling the bar for all. Everybody can do something to help a fellow New Yorker

  19. A REAL Christian – what a wonderful thing to see when so many are so scared of how they will survive – you are a saint Mr. Salerno, and I wish for you every good thing there is on this planet ! God Bless you !

  20. A big Bravo to Mr. Salerno and a big Big hug and kiss to you. I was born in 1959 and have never meet a landlord with such big loving kind heart !!
    I wish you could be my landlord right now lol May your heart be bless with joy and happiness !!

  21. That guy is a class act, This unselfess shows a person with a great heart and will be rewarded 100 times over for this act of kindness. If not in this world then definatly in the next. GOD BLESS YOU MARIO

  22. What an act of kindness , never underestimate New Yorkers, I suggest we all stop by that gas Staion & make a donation to this man , he still has bills to pay too

  23. I want to thank Mr. Salerno for his generosity toward his tenants. I saw a report on the national news, allll the way over herein Minnesota, which highlighted his position on this situation we all find us in. We truly are all in this together and Mr. Salerno has set the bar for all of us. God bless you ()

  24. I’m in Buffalo NY and just saw this story on NBC Nightly News. One word: inspiring! Such commendable actions by Mario and his tenants. For him to extend that gift to all 200 tenants is just remarkable and for tenants fortunate to get a paycheck through this pandemic offering to still pay their rent …and their neighbor’s…is impressive. The “pay it forward” mentality of Americans is inspiring and gives us all hope. Well done Mario and God Bless you for your generous and thoughtfulness.

  25. I was born in Williamsburg but spent my professional life as an assistant principal at Intermediate School 49 on Graham Ave. Thanks to great citizens like Mario Salerno the Greenpoint-Williamsburg community has always been a great place to work and live. Thanks for setting the example and stay safe. People’s health and lives come before economics.

  26. I was born and raised in Williamsburg, and this is how we were raised, to help each other when times are bad. Mr Salerno, God will bless you.
    You and your family stay safe.

  27. God Bless you for your kindness and unselfishness.
    I’m a Salerno as well (maiden name) but no relation that I know of
    Again, God Bless you

  28. Mario..
    Growing up…You were always so nice to me.
    Always had that smile. Helping out your tenants is wonderful…l’m sure they’re greatful too!
    Stay safe…May God Bless Us All….
    Sincerely, Carolyn

  29. Mario, I heard about this from my niece, Heather Ferrari who used to live near you in Williamsburg. She and my nephew Anthony just love you! They remember how kind you were to them when they had car problems. You are my hero! What a great thing to do for your tenants! With all of us losing our jobs and worrying about getting sick, you are a bright light in this time of darkness! Stay safe and healthy, prayers for you and your family! Love, Susan DiGiorgio and family

  30. Even when there is no major crisis Mario and his family are always helping people in the community. He has a heart of gold. He is a hard-working person who I am so privileged to know and call friend so I am not surprised that he has again set an example we all should follow. Helping those around us and sharing the blessings we know are from above. That’s a real person of faith. God bless you and your family Mario!

  31. If Mr. Salerno wants/needs good tenants, we’ll be looking to move next spring, and would love a good landlord for a change! Mr. Salerno, please let us know if you have any nice 2 bedrooms available for a small family (us and our baby boy). Thank you!!!
    I can be reached at: youknowwho1@live.com

  32. This message is for Mario Salerno: I was moved by your empathy, awareness and timely act of kindness. I am the co-founder and CEO of a new company called EppoPay which helps landlords collect rent and tenants pay their rent bills – the modern, fully electronic system gives tenants a way to smooth out their rent payments using an app on the phone. We would be honored to partner with you as one of our early landlords. The system is designed to make it easier for the landlord and for the tenant and ultimately to create a better relationship – something you seem to care about. Let me know if you want to meet. – Leslie H

  33. People like this impact the world during a hard time. He has my prayers. Sympathy toward the less fortunate keeps this world a little lighter and better place. Thank you

  34. I’ve been seeing Mario around since I first moved to Williamsburg in 2002. He has a big personality and his service station is always hopping. He has a good reputation around the neighborhood. So I am not surprised to see he is acting so selflessly in this situation. He is a real New Yorker, the kind that makes this city great.

  35. Awwww, what an angel this man is. The Bible says to love your neighbor as yourself and that is exactly what he is doing by helping his people. God will provide you with many blessings, Mr. Salerno. Thank you for you generosity. God bless you and your family.

    Sher in San Diego, CA

  36. Mr. Salerno, the world needs more people like you. You have a big heart. The world is hurting and you have done a great service for humanity. I live in Vancouver, BC but if I lived in Williamsburg, I would certainly get my car fixed at your auto shop. I encourage all residents of Williamsburg and the surrounding area to bring their cars to you for repairs in the future and any other businesses that you own.
    May God bless you and your family. Stay safe!

  37. Mr. Salerno. Check out this article about Federal assistance for landlords. Kushner company stands to benefit from freeze on federal mortgage payments. It was posted on MSN from Politico.

  38. Not charging rent for a month is going to dramatically reduce stress for some of your residents. This was very decent and kind of you to do this. You are a good person and we need more people like you. Stay safe

  39. Now this is a hero – Didn’t need the Government. Could afford it.
    I’m so impressed
    Tell him to start a GoFundMe for his tenants that we can all help him support

  40. Dear Mario Salerno: I have never responded to an online story of any kind, but I was compelled to do so. Last Friday my landlord gave me a notice, too. However, it was a rent increase notice, yes, a rent increase. I have no words to express my feelings. I was born and raised in Manhattan and now live in San Francisco. You are compassionate, honorable, kind and gloriously considerate. Please take good care of yourself and wash your hands!

  41. Mario Salerno, you make me proud to be an American.You knew what was truly important, what needed to be done and you stepped up to the plate and made it happen. The world needs more people like you.

  42. Mr. Salerno

    Sir you truly are another one of America’s Hero!

    I wish more landlords could/would be this compassionate.
    I live in Charlotte, NC, and after reading this beautiful story (that brought tears to my eyes), I knew I had to write a small Thank You note.

    I trust God at His word;
    “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

    You gave to those in need.

    I know without a doubt God will do abundantly, above and beyond all that you could ask for or think.” He says he is going to go past the reach of our greatest prayers. Then beyond all we could think or envision! THIS IS MY PRAYER FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY.

    God Bless

  43. The SALERNO name has come full circle, especially in NYC. As I am also a Salerno but living in Little Egg Harbor, NJ, have learned over the years about Salernos in the news. The first I recall was a fairly famous NYC detective with the Salerno surname (good). Then i learned about a Mofioso, Fat Tony Salerno, who was a doninste figure for while in the city (bad). Now I find a Salerno who as a landlord of many rental properties has been able to put “people before profits”….Mario Salerno (good). There have been many talented Salernos over the years, in the arts, music and sports. I AM PROUD TO BE A SALERNO. Wishing all well during this horrible pandemic.

  44. I never had the honor of meeting this great man.I hope he sees this Comment.Mario, you`re everything an American should aspire to.You`re industrious, considerate and kind.You`ll be remembered in Heaven…and you`ll be remembered on Earth .Bless you sir.

  45. You’re so great human, I hope my daughter live under your apartment, she’s live in Brooklyn near where stadium is , I worry for her, all her roommates went home, I beg her to go or I come pick up she denied and choice to stay there , I been asked her go home since I saw the news said Covid 19 exposure in New Rochelle NY as the mother always worryAnd getting worse right in NYC

  46. Lindo su gesto sr Dios lo colme de bendiciones, y siga así ayudando a los demás el ser solidario lo hace q sea un ser agradable ….lluvia de bendiciones


  48. Mario was my mechanic in the 90’s. Both he and his father were transparent and sincere. Being a woman, it was important for me to find a mechanic who I did not feel vulnerable to being taken advantage of. He’s just being Mario helping his tenants out with waving April’s rent. His father, Sal would be proud of him! I glad to see he’s doing well and helping New Yorkers!!

  49. Mr. Salerno:
    You are a good and considerate man first, a landlord second. I hope other landlords in NYC, and around the country, follow your lead.

    Whether people want to acknowledge it or not, we are all in this together.


  50. Mario, you are indeed an Angel. Thank you for caring about your Tenants. You are a role model for all Landlords around the world.
    This story touched my heart.
    Blessings from Marilyn in Australia


  52. God Bless him. Though I was born on Long Island, my parents are from Greenpoint, and my dad was a mailman there for over 30 years. Salerno did a wonderful thing, as many people are not able to pay their rent – which is a major stress point. We have enough stress right now – God Bless you Mr. Salerno.

  53. May god look down and keep Mr. Salerno and his gamily safe. Mr
    Salerno is a man that we should all try to follow as an example. Please know, Mr. Salerno many people will be able to eat, and feed their children, due to your beautiful offer. The absolute best of what America can be if we all think of others at this time.

  54. I would like to thank Mario Salerno for being a highly decent human being during this time of crisis. I don’t want to call the gas station as I imagine they are overwhelmed with calls now. Is there an email address that you could share with me so I could write my appreciation. At a time when our national leadership is so self-centered and corrupt, acts like Salernos stand out in highly favourable contrast and make me and others appreciate them all the more. Cheers, Suzanne Amenta

  55. WOW…. what a great gesture by this guy! THANKS for your kindness… wish i lived a bit closer so i could patronise your service shop and buy gas at your station for the rest of my natural life! KUDOS !

  56. You are my hero! There should be more wonderful people in this world who care about others in their time of need.
    You, sir, have restored my faith in mankind.
    I don’t know you, but I love your generous heart!

  57. Mario – angels abide and you are at the top of the list – you have earned your wings! NYC is so grateful for people like you who are truly caring and compassionate…..blessings on you and your family….

  58. Selfless Angels walking amongst us like you Mario, gives the rest of us hope that there are still good people out there. You not only show compassion towards other’s well being & understands we’re all going through this together but also represent a wonderful inspiration for others to follow. God bless your kindness & for making this world a better place for your community.

  59. In these times of uncertainty , its people like YOU that allow fear of unknown subside, I am in Toronto, Canada your actions brought me comfort, we will all get thru this.

    May God Bless you, Buona Pasqua !!!

  60. What a Great guy ! I own a Process Service Company called
    YOU ARE SERVED and of course having more people like Mario puts less work in my hands when evictions are legal again.
    However i would much prefer to see more landlords have a heart at this time and in the end the for me just like everyone else things will work out !!! You go Mario ! You are Loved !

  61. I really appreciate your generosity very much. I hope that the CNN reporter and the California real estate lady who contacted me to interview and congratulate me have been able to locate you.
    I have never met another Mario Salerno. Give me a call, I would love to chat with you. Mario

  62. Dear Mr. Salerno, may our Lord of Divine Mercy whose compassion we sought this last Sunday of Divine Mercy, bless your kind heart abundantly, together with every member of your family.

  63. I’m not a tenant of Mario belding,but i just want to say THANK YOU to this amazing man, who is one of the not many people, care about his tenants
    and understand difficult situations in the whole country. G-D BLESS YOU MARIO Alla O.

  64. Mr. Mario Salerno,

    I have not seen you since 1991… I did not you very well but you took me for a ride in your Corvette and The car where the doors fly open.
    I grew up with Gil Hulsen…We had many a good times…

    I had 2n stage stomach cancer in 2014…
    3 months ago I had a Cat scan… My cancer is cured.

    I have 2 identical twin daughter’s 5 years old…

    They are my life my happiness and joy. I love them and they love Daddy….. I wanted to tell you how proud I was of you when you told your tenant s April’s rent is void.

    I am a few classes away from my Masters Degree in Mental health.

    Everything I do is for my Daughter’s…….as it should be.
    I will stop by the gas station to say hello very soon.

    I too have been blessed by Jesus my entire life.

    I still workout and I am 57 going on 25

    Life is a beautiful Journey.

    Take Care Mario…

    John Thomas Madigan

    Semper Fidelis

  65. Mario, I know you and your parents, May they Rest In Peace. I know fir over 30 years when your father was at the gas station showing you the trade. He did a good job by racing you with a golden heart and goodness. There is no word that could describe you, but say you the most incredible human being that God put into this world to help others always and in time of need. You have and have been doing my car repairs. I only fill my gas tank at your station for over 25 years and I am very proud and honored to have you as a friend. THE BEST TO THE BEST . No one cannot take it away. By the way. Your kids are great too and I love you all the same. May God Bless you always with Good Health for all you done and still doing. (Good Deeds. Julie )

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