The Biden administration announced Tuesday night that it's renewing its federal eviction moratorium that expired on July 31st but it's now putting a more targeted approach on the ban.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is banning evictions for areas hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic, extending the temporary halt until Oct. 3, 2021.
"CDC is issuing a new order temporarily halting evictions in counties with heightened levels of community transmission in order to respond to recent, unexpected developments in the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the rise of the Delta variant," the CDC announced. "It is intended to target specific areas of the country where cases are rapidly increasing, which likely would be exacerbated by mass evictions."
Landlords who are struggling to make payments on their mortgage due to a loss of income during the eviction ban have several options available including federal aid or mortgage refinancing. Visit Credible to find out how to save hundreds of dollars on your monthly payment by lowering your interest rate.
Who does the targeted federal eviction moratorium apply to?
The Supreme Court ruled in June that the CDC can’t extend its eviction ban but many key Democrats called on the agency to extend the moratorium anyway.
After Congress on Friday was unable to secure the votes needed to pass an extension of the previous eviction ban, President Joe Biden over the weekend asked the CDC to look into its options, instructing the agency to "look into any legal authority, any option they have, perhaps a narrower approach, perhaps a short term extension," White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Tuesday.
The new CDC ban narrows the scope of the original freeze and puts several restrictions in place. The agency said the ban applies to all tenants who:
- Have done everything in their power to receive federal rental assistance
- Earned wages of less than $99,000 annual income (or $198,000 for those filing a joint tax return) in 2020 or expects to earn less in 2021 or received a stimulus check
- Can't make their monthly payments because of a significant loss of household income, reduced hours or "extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses"
- Are doing their best to at least "make timely partial rent payments that are as close to the full rent payment" as their situation allows
- Would become homeless or be forced into a shared living situation or shelter as a result of eviction
- Are living in an area of the U.S. "experiencing substantial or high rates of community transmission" of COVID-19, as determined by the CDC.
If you're a landlord and are struggling to make payments, you can apply for federal aid or refinance your mortgage to lower your monthly costs. Visit Credible to compare mortgage lenders and get prequalified in minutes without affecting your credit score.
What other options do renters and landlords have?
Some federal agencies including the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) previously announced that their pandemic-driven eviction moratoria would be extended through Sept. 30, 2021.
But now, researchers estimate that the new CDC extension will provide assistance to more than 25% of the nation’s 43 million renters, according to the CDC. The agency explained the ban will help with self-isolation and social distancing as cases from the Delta variant rise.
For renters who aren't protected under the ban, there are still several options available. And landlords looking to make their mortgage payments while the eviction ban is in place also have options:
- Rental assistance: One of the qualifications for the new eviction ban is that tenants must have done everything they can to secure funding for rental assistance. There is currently more than $45 million in allotted rental assistance funding available, according to the Treasury Department. And for most of these programs, landlords are also able to apply for assistance themselves to receive their missed mortgage payments. Through the Treasury Department’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program, landlords can receive up to 18 months of missed payments.
- Mortgage refinance: Homeowners can refinance their mortgage with today’s sub-3% interest rates, potentially saving hundreds of dollars on their monthly payments. The average interest rate on a 30-year mortgage is just 2.8%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey. These savings could allow homeowners to be more flexible with their tenants' payments and ensure they can continue to make their own mortgage payments. You can use an online mortgage calculator, like this one from Credible, to see how much you could save on your monthly payments.
- Mortgage forbearance: For landlords, if refinancing to lower their payment or rental assistance is not an option, many can request forbearance on their home to pause their mortgage payments while facing financial hardship. This would ensure they don’t go into foreclosure on their home while their tenants are unable to make their monthly payments.
If you are considering refinancing your mortgage or want to review your options, contact Credible to speak to a home loan expert and get all of your questions answered.
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