NMHC asks firms to help renters as eviction ban deadline looms
It issues new principles encouraging apartment companies and tenants to work together to "transition back to normalcy"
In anticipation of the eviction moratorium ending on June 30, The National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) has issued a new set of principles that calls for apartment firms to help renters recover from the pandemic.
In a statement, the trade and advocacy group said that the principles were intended to halt evictions, create payment plans, and work with residents in need. NMHC argued that an eviction ban was no longer necessary and that “a continuation of the moratorium will only further exacerbate renters’ financial hardship as they continue to accrue insurmountable levels of debt.” The federal moratorium on evictions was put into place over a year ago and was intended as an emergency, short-term approach during the onset of the health crisis. The pandemic relief included more than $46 billion specifically for rental assistance, which has prevented rent payments from plummeting during the height of the pandemic, according to NMHC.
Here are the principles:
Encourage residents to seek rental assistance and apply on behalf of residents or assist with the application process where able.
Offer solutions to help residents avoid eviction, including payment plans, deferments, and extended or flexible lease periods for residents who fell behind on rent payments due to the pandemic.
Provide notice of at least 30 days to residents before filing an eviction for non-payment of rental obligations.
Work with jurisdictions to break down artificial barriers to rental assistance benefits that stand in the way of residents receiving the help they need, like onerous documentation requirements.
Identify governmental and community resources to broadly help residents secure food, financial assistance, and healthcare, and share that information with residents.
Communicate with residents that it is a priority for the industry to partner with them to help them retain their housing.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, housing providers and residents alike made tremendous sacrifices to meet their obligations during unprecedented economic uncertainty,” said NMHC resident Doug Bibby. “As we emerge on the other side of this crisis, we realize that many are still struggling as the relief makes its way to people in need. We continue to encourage apartment firms to work with residents during the wind-down of these emergency pandemic orders as we transition back to normalcy.”