COVID rent relief: What we know about the eviction moratorium and your Aug. 1 rent check

COVID rent relief: What we know about the eviction moratorium and your Aug. 1 rent check

As many as 40% of US renters are at risk of losing their homes if the federal eviction moratorium established by the federal CARES Act is not extended or renewed, according to a Statista’s state-by-state analysis. The CARES Act expired July 25 and is thought to have helped as many as 23 million US families (roughly one-third of all US renters) stay in their homes during the coronavirus recession. Eviction notices are now legally allowed to proceed and evictions can begin starting Aug. 24.

Congressional Democrats introduced legislation Tuesday to address evictions, but it is the fourth such Democratic effort and the three before never made it to a vote. The HEALS Act stimulus bill that Senate Republicans introduced this week includes another round of stimulus checks, but no mention of eviction relief for renters. Without a federal ban, housing advocates warn of a “tsunami of evictions.”

However, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that a short-term extension of the federal eviction ban is in the works. Meanwhile, some landlords have already reportedly filed for evictions in violation of the law, even before the protection ended.

With August rent around the corner, where does this all leave you? Here’s what we know about evictions, protection laws and what kind of resources can help you ask your landlord for a reduced rent or extension. Note that this story is updated frequently as the situation develops. It’s intended to provide an overview, not to serve as financial advice.

What happens now that eviction protections have ended?

The federal CARES Act that was passed in March temporarily banned evictions and late fees until July 25. It also required a 30-day notice to vacate before you can be evicted.

If you live in a property covered by the CARES Act, landlords can now legally ask you to leave and start charging late fees, but the soonest they can legally file an eviction to force you to leave is Aug. 24. As long as Congress passes an extension or renewal of the eviction ban before Aug. 24 — which seems likely — tenants who are behind on rent should continue to be temporarily able to remain in their homes…Read more>>