As we approach the coming months, more and more concerns are growing around America’s ability to pay rent. With over 20 million Americans filing for unemployment, and this number growing by the day, many are worried about how they will pay to keep a roof over their heads. While the majority of states are offering rent relief during this time, there are a handful of states who have yet to announce any plans to take action on behalf of renters.
The congressional enacted CARES Act includes a $12 billion dollar fund for the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). This money is being used to provide an array of services for low-income renters and those experiencing rent concerns due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Senator Ben Carson has announced that $685 million dollars of this fund will be utilized for COVID-19 relief to help low-income Americans. The National Low Income Housing Coalition has provided a list of states and local governments offering assistance.
While many states are providing moratoriums and extensions to bar evictions during this national emergency, there are some that are not. USA Today has released a state-by-state map providing information on states barring evictions, as well as those providing only partial or no assistance. According to their research, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota, Utah, Colorado, Missouri, Ohio, Arkansas, Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia, are among the list of 12 states not currently offering any current rent relief efforts. In addition, The Eviction Lab has published a housing policy scorecard, along with a list of emergency policies and community resources to help those facing the possibility of eviction.
Even if your state has taken action to extend rent relief for renters, it is important to note that these relief measures may vary by county. Be sure to check your county’s local website for more information on these measures. For example, Chicago has joined the state of Illinois in its efforts to support residents by providing rental assistance to those who are eligible.