Is An Eviction Crisis On The Horizon?

Aug 17, 2020

The federal eviction moratorium has expired, yet a staggering number of Americans still can’t make rent during the pandemic. Without a safety net, are renters barreling toward an eviction crisis?


Emily Benfer, law professor at Wake Forest University. Co-creator of the Eviction Lab housing policy scorecard. Chair of the American Bar Association coronavirus task force. (@emilyabenfer)

Josephine Lee, organizer with El Pueblo Primero, a community-based workers’ rights group in Houston, Texas.

Latisha Gonzalez, Ohio resident. Her landlord issued her an eviction notice last month.

Tiana Caldwell, grassroots leader with KC Tenants, which organizes to ensure that tenants in Kansas City have access to safe and affordable homes. (@TianaCaldwell15)

From The Reading List

Policy memo: “The COVID-19 Eviction Crisis,” co-authored by Emily Benfer 

New York Times: The Coming Eviction Crisis: ‘It’s Hard to Pay the Bills on Nothing’” — “In Columbus, Ohio, judges have relocated eviction hearings to the cavernous halls of the city’s convention center, to ensure there’s plenty of space for the grim business of throwing families onto the street.” “Cleveland woman’s eviction case highlights growing struggle among Americans to pay rent during coronavirus pandemic” — “Latisha Gonzalez, a 28-year-old single mother of two, found herself in a tough situation when her children’s daycare shut down because of the coronavirus pandemic.”

NBC News: Landlords could exploit COVID-19 victims to fast-track evictions, housing advocates say” — “Just a few weeks after recovering from the coronavirus, Barbaro Rodriguez, a driver for Lyft, received a letter from his landlord saying that he was being evicted for being a ‘nuisance.'”

ProPublica: The Eviction Ban Worked, but It’s Almost Over. Some Landlords Are Getting Ready.” — “As tenants across Florida lost their jobs and incomes during the coronavirus pandemic, executives at Axiom Realty Partners LLC, whose portfolio includes at least nine apartment buildings throughout the Southeast, applied pressure on some tenants to either pay rent or move out.”

The Washington Post: Trump is calling for another moratorium on evictions. Landlords are pushing back.” — “As negotiations over another coronavirus relief package inch forward on Capitol Hill, President Trump has repeatedly promised over the last week that he would step in to help the millions of people vulnerable to eviction.”

Texas Tribune: “Houston announces $15 million to assist tenants, but passes on mandatory eviction grace period for people behind on rent” — “Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced a second round of $15 million in rental assistance for people financially struggling during the COVID-19 recession Friday, one day after he declined to support a city-mandated eviction grace period for tenants to catch up on past-due payments.”

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