The National Association of Realtors is calling for landlords to receive emergency rental assistance to help them cover their costs during the coronavirus pandemic.
The call comes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention called on a 1944 public health law that was created to help prevent the spread of dangerous illnesses, to justify an extension of an eviction moratorium until the end of the year.
The White House’s announcement that tenants cannot be evicted this year will assist many struggling renters, but at the same time it does nothing to help landlords who must still make payments and obligations on the properties they own, the NAR said.
“While NAR appreciates and is supportive of administrative efforts to ensure struggling Americans can remain in their homes, this order as written will bring chaos to our nation’s critical rental housing sector and put countless property owners out of business,” Vince Malta, NAR’s president, said in a statement. “Any eviction moratorium must also come with rental assistance for property owners, the vast majority of which are mom-and-pop investors and are still required to meet their financial obligations even as they cease to receive income on their properties.”
The new eviction moratorium runs through December 31, and applies to all renters who earn less than $99,000 a year. Renters must also certify that they’re unable to pay their rent due to the coronavirus pandemic, and those who’ve received protection will need to make up for their missed payments once the moratorium expires.
Earlier eviction moratoriums only applied to homebuyers who purchased their homes with federally backed mortgages from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. But the new law applies to all rental units in the country, White House officials said.
“An untailored eviction moratorium will bring more havoc to our economy, not less, and will put America’s 43 million renter households at significant risk,” Malta warned.
The NAR has urged Congress to pass new legislation that will provide emergency rental assistance programs to housing providers.