Renters: How to Have COVID-19 Rent Relief

What if losing work, even briefly, means you want rent relief? As states attempted to impede the spread of this coronavirus by imposing lockdowns or stay-at-home orders, paying the rent became harder. Even after many nations lifted lockdowns, effectively affected tenants wondered what relief they might have to help pay the rent or prevent eviction.

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Programs for homeowners who prevent eviction and foreclosure or provide mortgage payment relief are available from the federal government, states, municipalities, and private creditors. Many programs also provide help for renters. Here is what’s available, how it functions, and how to find help.

 
  • Federal eviction protection provided under the CARES Act has died.
  • However, many national, state, and local functions still shielded some tenants from evictions as of August 2020 and President Biden signed an executive order expanding the nationwide moratorium on foreclosures and evictions until at least March 31.
  • Rent forbearance can be found through some of the exact apps that have suspended evictions.
  • Different social service agencies, states, and local authorities provide additional rent assistance.
  • Legislation provided indirect help through $1,200 checks to a lot of adult U.S. citizens, and much more cash could be on the way.

CARES Act Eviction Protection

The CARES Act, signed into law enforcement 27, 2020, given 120 days of flooding relief for renters in federally-backed home, which has since died. Especially, you might not be served with an eviction notice until July 25, 2020. What’s more, the notice had to give you 30 days to leave the property (Aug. 24, 2020).

 

Throughout the 120-day flooding moratorium, your landlord couldn’t charge you late fees, penalties, or other fees for paying your rent late. It’s important to remember that the eviction moratorium didn’t relieve anyone of their duty to pay rent. It merely prevented your landlord from evicting you throughout this period for late payment.1

 

Rental Home marred by the Eviction Moratorium

The temporary moratorium on flooding filings pertained to some rental home that was one of the following:

 
  • Covered under section 41411 of the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (34 U.S.C. 12491(a)
  • Covered from the rural housing voucher program under section 542 of the Housing Act of 1949 (42 U.S.C. 1490r)
  • Had a Federally backed mortgage or multifamily mortgage loan1
 

Following Eviction Moratoriums

On August 27, 2020, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would “extend the moratoriums on single-family foreclosures and real estate owned (REO) evictions until at least December 31, 2020.” 2 After that, within the temporary Consolidated Appropriations Act, the moratorium was extended to January 31, 2021.3

Then, on his first day in office, President Biden signed an executive order extending the moratorium to March 31, 2021.

Landlords can’t evict tenants during any time in which they’re granted forbearance.

CARES Act Tenant-Based Rental Aid

Concerning direct assistance with lease, the CARES Act provided the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) with an additional $17.4 billion in financing. It included money for rent assistance, housing vouchers, public housing, and housing for the elderly. For help, contact HUD Rental Assistance.14

Other Financial Assistance

The $2.2 trillion CARES Act and other programs also offer financial aid that could help with housing costs, since the best way to use the cash isn’t specified.

Direct Payments

Retrieval benefits of $1,200 per adult person ($2,400 for couples filing jointly) and $500 for every child age 16 and under were automatically sent after April 2020. To get the full $1,200 ($2,400), your AGI for 2019 or 2018 must be $75,000 ($150,000 for couples) or less. The amount you get goes down as income rises above those amounts, and it disappears entirely at $99,000 ($198,000).1

There was broad agreement among policymakers that a second round of stimulation checks must be issued. However, disagreements on other issues prevented the passing of new direct payment laws as of August 2020.

Expanded Unemployment Benefits

Following CARES Act provisions offering extended unemployment benefits expired, an executive order providing additional assistance went into effect. Under the arrangement, the national government was supposed to provide $300 toward an extra $400 a week unemployment benefit, with the remainder paid for by state authorities.5 However, many practical and legal questions continued to postpone the execution of this order as of August 2020.

Underneath the CARES Act, eligibility for unemployment insurance has been enlarged if you lost your job during the coronavirus pandemic. After regular state benefits expired, the unemployed were entitled to receive up to an additional 13 weeks of benefits. What’s more, they have been eligible for another $600 a week.

The government also expanded these unemployment benefits to include individuals not ordinarily qualified, such as independent contractors, part-time employees, or participants at the gig market.1

Fannie Mae Disaster Response Network

Fannie Mae’s Disaster Response Network has released a guide for tenants affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19). Throughout the community, HUD-approved housing advisors supply:

  • Personalized recovery assessment and action plan
  • Help working with your home situation
  • Financial training and budgeting
  • accessibility to Clearpoint’s Project Porchlight Online resources and tools
  • Ongoing check-ins to help ensure a successful recovery

Call 877-542-9723 to get into the Disaster Response Network.6

$1,194

National median rent on a two-bedroom apartment as of Feb. 26, 2020.

Source: Apartmentlist.com March 2020.7

211. org Social Services Search

The United Way sponsors the site 211. Org, which gives you an easy-to-use search bar. You can search by ZIP code or by state and community to locate sources of help with rent and a number of other essential services. Fill in the necessary information, then click”search” to get information about available assistance.

State by State

Many nations have taken action to pause or suspend tenant evictions, at least briefly. The table below lists those countries that have stopped evictions and the date that the suspension ends if known. The listing will be updated as it changes.

Cities and Counties Also Provide Help

In states without statewide aid, many counties and cities have programs of their own. Check state and local government sites for information about coronavirus-related eviction moratoriums, rent forbearance, or rent assistance.

Advice From the National Apartment Association (NAA)

The National Apartment Association (NAA) reminds all tenants who have suffered financial distress throughout the coronavirus crisis to reach out to landlords to describe their situations. In addition to government programs, many landlords have strategies to help cope with the fiscal effect of the crisis.

 

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