An impending storm of evictions is set to hit the United States as the CDC eviction Moratorium expires in about 3 weeks. Earlier in the year, President Joe Biden called on Congress to allocate another $30 billion in housing aid, and an executive order to extend the national ban on evictions through March. The $25 billion Emergency Rental Assistance Program was designed to help people pay rent and utilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.
At the end of 2020, according to reports from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), about 8.8 million renters and 2 million homeowners were significantly behind on their housing payments. It was also revealed that a greater percentage of affected people were from communities of color, Black and Hispanic households.
As the extension draws closer to expiration, advocates are now calling on the president to extend the protection through executive order, warning of a flood of evictions if no action is taken.
The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) announced: “The American Rescue Plan Act provides urgently needed Covid-19 relief resources for America’s lowest-income renters and people experiencing homelessness. If enacted, these investments will help prevent millions of low-income people from losing their homes during the pandemic.”
The much anticipated federal relief bill, would reinstate many of the provisions that kept cash-strapped families housed. It allocates $26 billion for emergency rental assistance and $10 billion for homeowner assistance, extends enhanced unemployment benefits through August and provides another stimulus check for many families.
Advocates have also pointed out that relief in the bill, including more than $20 billion in rental assistance and direct payments of up to $1,400, will take time to reach people.