The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was able to stop evictions of renters during the coronavirus pandemic. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) also made it unlawful for landlords to evict tenants in federally subsidized or federally backed housing. However, those protections expired on July 24.
Since governors across the country shut down the economy, many streams of income stopped. As a result, renters got behind, or stopped paying rent. Tomorrow, July 31, 25 million Americans will no longer receive their weekly $600.00 federal unemployment checks. The next round, if it happens, will likely be reduced.
West Virginia appears to be ground zero:
The analysis is based on Household Pulse Data from mid-July and it found that some states will be hit harder than others. For example, West Virginia is estimated to have the highest share of renter households facing eviction at close to 60%. Tennessee, Minnesota, Mississippi, Florida and Louisiana are all among the states set to be worst impacted with shares at 50% or higher. Elsewhere, Vermont is the state where renters will be at the lowest risk of eviction, though 22% of them will potentially lose their homes over the course of the crisis. – Forbes
“It’s like nothing we’ve ever seen,” said John Pollock, coordinator of the National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel. In 2016, there were 2.3 million evictions, Pollock said. “There could be that many evictions in August,” he said. – Zero hedge
The WV Supreme Court had suspended evictions in the state (though I don’t see how that’s constitutional) but that was up on May 15. As of now, evictions may proceed. Legal Aid of West Virginia has a good self-help page set up to answer a lot of the questions.
The WV Attorney General also has published a brochure so that you know what your rights are. Just FYI.
Like the Governor said, “a little overreaction never hurt anybody . . . so long as it saves one life.”