A federal judge ruled the national moratorium on evictions needs to come to an end, a decision housing advocates say could have devastating consequences.
“I am very concerned,” said Beya Jimenez of Abundant Housing Massachusetts, a coalition of housing activists. “If there was ever a time we need compassion, it would be now.”
Jimenez says Wednesday's decision could lead to countless people across the country being evicted in the coming months because they’re delinquent on rent, yet secure housing is critical in the pandemic recovery effort.
“By ending the eviction moratorium, we’re leaving low-income tenants, especially those from very vulnerable families, we’re leaving them behind,” she said.
Landlords have been struggling as well amid the weight of unpaid rent.
“It’s been very tough for landlords,” said Doug Quattrochi of Mass Landlords, a group that represents about 70,000 mom and pop landlords across the state. “We’re providing housing all this time, you’ve got to remember housing is not free, we have taxes, insurance, repairs, mortgage expenses.”
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Quattrochi says many landlords have given up.
“What we’ve seen is about three times as many landlords as normal have sold the business,” he said. “Selling to larger, better capitalized, more corporate operations because we’ve run out of money.”
Both Quattrochi and Jimenez say the government needs to free up more rental assistance so tenants can pay their landlords.