CDC Launches Attacks on Landlords

Do not worry about landlords. They are high. They don’t need their tenants to pay rent. I get so frustrated with the closed-minded advocates who find it difficult to see how an action that might assistance one group, hurts others. They want to push their agenda, no matter the cost.

According to some housing advocates, the recent CDC Eviction Moratorium does not do enough to help, and it should be the burden of the landlord to locate government sustain while the tenant is able to miss rent payments with no recourse. Do these people not realize that the majority of landlords own less than three units and NEED rent to fund maintenance, taxes, insurance and mortgage payments? What happens to their character when they stop paying their mortgage?

Early last month the CDC used its’ powers to enact a moratorium stopping landlords from evicting their tenant for nonpayment of rent. This moratorium is good by the end of the year, with the possibility of extensions. The CDC can do this because they claim this is not about supporting people in need financially (which is not their job) it is to slow the spread of COVID-19 (which is their job). I applaud them for recognizing the risks of homelessness and compact living situations with the spread of the virus, but what I don’t understand is why the burden falls on the small “mom and pop” landlords? Here are the often-misunderstood details of the recent Eviction Moratorium.

With very little exception, every tenant qualifies for eviction protection!! To qualify, the tenant only needs to meet two requirements.

Attempt to get government sustain to pay rent.

Make less than $99,000 in a year for a single taxpayer or $198,000 for dual income families.

I struggle with the second requirement, because that is more money than most people that do make their payments earn in a year. According to the CDC, in order to provide a 2-bedroom home in the most expensive market in the country, the family needs to make $80,621 per year. That would keep rent at 30% of the household income. Since the CDC referenced the 30% of income number, their guidelines to qualify for this moratorium method that the family that is protected from eviction could make rent payments of almost $5,000 per month. See why I say almost every tenant qualifies? All my tenants certainly do.

Sound bad? It gets worse. the time of action to stop you from evicting them for nonpayment is rather simple. All that is required is for the tenant to send you a signed declaration. They can get this declaration online, sign it, and send it to you and stop you from evicting them. Notice how I did not mention that they need to prove they tried to get sustain, nor do they need to prove that they truly need it? It is important to observe that this is only for nonpayment, so if you have a tenant that is breaking rules, causing trouble, or is simply outside the lease term, you can nevertheless evict. It is also good that this is not a forgiveness of rent, or at the minimum that is the idea, it is just a keep up on the eviction. The tenant will nevertheless owe all rent and late fees and you, as the landlord, will nevertheless have the opportunity to collect that at some point. Good luck with that!

My advice would be to start the eviction if you did not receive the declaration. If the tenant does not send that to you, they are not protected. I would also suggest working with your tenant as much as possible. If they truly are in need and want to work with you, let them. A uncompletely payment is better than no payment and helping them keep their home is important in times like these. Finally, if you have any leases expiring, I suggest moving those leases to a month to month. at the minimum until we get past the COVID chaos. Having a month to month lease will allow you to evict based on the lease expiring and not nonpayment.

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