The CDC’s decision to extend the eviction moratorium through October 3, 2021, has left many smaller landlords in the lurch as they wrestle with unpaid rent.
The move is meant to protect renters who took a financial hit during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it’s becoming increasingly unpopular with both tenants and landlords.
In fact, around 6.5 million rental units are behind on rent; 72% of which belong to small landlords.
What’s more, landlords argue that federal intervention has provided very few tools to help landlords affected by the moratorium. Renters also complain that half-measures, such as extending the moratorium, do little to solve the central problem of paying back rent accrued over the pandemic.
In addition, many landlords complain that the policy gives them no outs and no way to force renters to pay rent even if those renters don’t strictly need the assistance. Consequently, thousands of landlords have hired legal counsel to begin eviction procedures, whereas some have even resorted to using tenant screening services to avoid such a mess in the first place.
Still, there’s simply no legal recourse, according to reports.
While around $50 billion of federal aid has been earmarked to help struggling renters meet their obligations, Treasury data shows that most of the money remains unclaimed.
Namely, complying with federal regulation to allocate the funds has been a consistent challenge for state and local governments. As a result, most of the federal aid that could help alleviate the rent crisis remains tangled up in red tape.
Despite both tenants and landlords complaining about the slow rollout of assistance, states have seemed incapable of mobilizing the disbursement any faster.
Experts also pointed to the fact that many renters aren’t even aware of the availability of the assistance program — hence why spreading awareness is the next logical step.