Financial Solutions Available to Pandemic-Weary Landlords and Tenants

The housing situation nationwide is one of a “tsunami of evictions" without rent relief and possibly another stimulus package according to CNN. One North Carolina county courthouse reported 600 evictions filed in one week. Nebraska’s Legal Aid Housing Justice Project says their judges are ruling against landlords trying to evict tennants.

In Danger of Losing Your Home - Consult a Lawyer

Consult a lawyer if you fear eviction or forclosure. If you live in a city, your library holds free legal clinics and can refer you to appropriate legal resources. If you live in a rural area, your social services office works with agencies and private donors that help homeowners and tenants pay their mortgages or rent.

Apply to Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity accepts applications for housing from homeowners who demonstrate that they need safe affordable housing. Applicants must work or be able to pay a low interest mortgage. Habitat for Humanity does not discriminate based on race or religion, but homeowners who can help build their own homes may be preferred.

COVID-19 Positive Tenants and Homeowners

As Covid-19 leaves patients struggling to pay medical bills, without a job or insecure with residual health problems, Princeton’s Eviction Lab monitored 25 cities nationwide. Princeton recorded 100,000 eviction cases involving COVID-19 positive tenants. The National Low Income Housing Coalition needs $100 billion to save these patients from eviction.

Federal Housing Administration Funds

The Federal Housing Administration or a debt collection lawyer in your state might get you the money you need to purchase a home. You might be eligible for pandemic or firt time homebuyer funds, $4,000 to $10,000, to help you purchase a home. A debt collection attorney can help tenants file for bankruptcy to renegotiate past-due rent or help landlords remove mortgage loans from rental properties.

State and Local Funds to Avoid Evictions

Your state and local government set aside funds to help tenants facing eviction. Massachusetts landlords, for example, signed an Eviction Diversion Pact to continue to provide housing to tenants in 57,000 rental homes in Massachusetts. Massachusetts is awarding $100 million to landlords through the Massachusetts RAFT program. The Residential Assistance for Families in Transition fund is to pay landlords who own rental homes to continue housing families with Covid-19 or pandemic-related financial problems.

Tennants Fearing Eviction Can File Chapter 13 Bankruptcy

Tennants with steady employment can file Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy to liquidate their debts or consolidate their debts and repay them with lower monthly payments. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act altered income and debt thresholds necessary to qualify for the protection of the United States Bankruptcy Court. If you can show financial hardship due to the Coronavirus pandemic and stable employment for at least 30 days, you can file a bankruptcy petition. Under Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the bankruptcy trustee accepts your monthly consolidated payment and disburses payments to your creditors according to your three to seven-year repayment plan.

Landlords with Multiple Rental Properties Reorganize in Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Through Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, landlords can extend the terms of their mortgages and businees loans to reduce their monthly loan payments. With pending legal actions stayed by the United States Bankruptcy Court, landlords may be able to remove loans from their properties entirely. Until March 27, 2021, the United States Bankruptcy Court is allowing seven years to succeed in a reorganization plan under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act instead of five years. Landlords with multiple properties can liquidate a property to pay off other mortgages.

Centers for Disease Control Moratorium on Eviction

The Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) moratorium on eviction requires tennants to submit written statements endorsed by their landlords to qualify for funds to pay their rent. The CDC funds are awarded to low income families with children or vulnerable adults in the household, but the CDC moratorium on eviction funds expires at the end of December 2020.

Fannie Mae

Under the auspices of the Federal Housing Administration, Fannie Mae is paying mortgage payments and offering up to 12 months of forbearance for mortgagees who suffered finanical hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Fannie Mae can reclassify your mortgage loan or refinance your mortgage loan through an FHA Fannie Mae program to resolve your pandemic-related finanical crisis.

Though CARES Act assistance expires at the end of December, state and local government funds are available to help tenants facing eviction and mortgage holders facing foreclosure. Local agencies, habitat for humanity, and housing programs may be able to help you find a home if you face eviction.

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