But the rent is still due. For people who have relied on these protections, this month could mark the beginning of new challenges.
“Emergency rental assistance must be a priority,” said Priscilla Almodovar, executive director of Enterprise Community Partners, a national non-profit organization that develops affordable housing. “It’s a key factor in avoiding expulsion, which means homelessness.”
There are up to 23 million tenants at risk of losing their homes, according to a report by the Covid-19 Defense Project and the Aspen Institute’s Financial Security Program, as the moratoriums expire in jurisdictions across the country. One in five tenants is at risk of eviction by the fall, with the most vulnerable being undocumented people and people with colorful and low incomes, according to the report.
“I expect to see a lot of families struggling with homelessness as we begin the school year, which is already fraught with complications,”
; said Erin O. Planalp, managing attorney at Iowa Legal Aid. “But I hope we can upgrade our community connections and partner with landlords to try to give people a little more time.”
For people who can’t pay rent this month, the good news is that there may be more resources to ease the rent than when the pandemic began.
Know what protections you have
If you are unable to pay your rent, talk to your landlord. Many will agree to take partial payments or set a payment plan. But if you still can’t rent, you need to know what protections you need to avoid eviction.
Moratoriums on evictions have been introduced, which are stopping landlords or registering or removing a tenant to protect tenants from losing their home during a health crisis. But they were crowded and confusing. There were moratoriums at the federal or local level, for different types of homes and for different times.
The largest federal ban on expulsions expired on July 24. Included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) and known as the moratorium on evictions under the CARES Act, it protects tenants in federally subsidized or federally supported housing from eviction for non-payment of rent. It was narrow protection, covering only one of the four rental homes, according to the Urban Institute, but if you’re in that category, it’s less protection.
But two other protections are still in place. The FHA, VA and USDA have extended eviction protection in some situations for tenants of family homes until August 31. Separately, if your landlord receives a CARES Act mortgage relief on the home you rent, then you can be protected from eviction for a longer period,
At this point, tenants are more likely to be protected by a local moratorium, which may be extended or remain in force.
Such protections are based on where you live. For example, in New York State, the governor extended the moratorium on evictions until August 20. The moratorium on expulsions was extended in Washington until October 15, and in Massachusetts until October 17. You can check the condition in your country in the expulsion laboratory.
Or your protection may come from the type of home you have. The Philadelphia Housing Authority has announced that it will extend the moratorium on evictions for non-payment of rent until March 15, 2021. This action is an effort to provide 80,000 low-income residents of government who are “disproportionately affected by the virus. can maintain housing stability during this time of economic uncertainty, according to Kelvin A. Jeremiah, president of PHA.
But regardless of the protection against a moratorium on evictions you may be under, the rent is not forgiven. Unpaid rent is still due and will eventually be paid to avoid eviction.
Visit to find help
The CARES Act has allocated money to states and communities to use for rent relief. But connecting tenants in need with money is difficult, legal aid officials say.
For anyone who has not been overdue, it is difficult to understand how difficult it is to live in a permanent state of emergency, Planalp said. “There is this struggle or reaction on the flight. It’s so hard to take steps to understand this for you and your family.”
The National Coalition for Low-Income Housing estimates that at least $ 100 billion in emergency rental assistance will be needed because of the pandemic, and it lists the relief available. Some states have set up their own web portals to help with hiring. If you are a resident of Iowa or Arizona, for example, you can answer a few questions to determine your options for assistance.
“There’s a lot of funding out there,” Planalp said. “But there are several programs, and each program has its own criteria.”
Still, much of this aid funding frees people, she said. Tenants who are not documented or have no legal status are not entitled to CARES law relief.
Other information on local housing support resources can be found through the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and a state list of non-profit support organizations can be found in Just Shelter.
“The help is there,” Planalp said. “We need to connect people with the right program and give them enough time to apply so they can get the relief they need before they lose their home.”