Washington, D.C. – The National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) strongly opposes last minute legislation being considered by Congress to create a national eviction moratorium through the end of the year. NMHC led a coalition of national real estate trade groups in sending a letter urging Congress not to extend the eviction moratorium and to focus instead on accelerating the distribution of nearly $50 billion in federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) funds provided by Congress earlier this year.
This issue is extremely important and complex and should not be undertaken hastily. An extension of the eviction moratorium jeopardizes the financial stability of housing providers and is not constructive in supporting the continued affordability and availability of housing. Continuing a one-size-fits-all, national moratorium will only further exacerbate renters’ financial hardship as they continue to accrue insurmountable levels of debt and undermines the urgency to distribute assistance funds.
The economic support delivered through COVID relief measures has provided a path to stability and recovery for individuals and businesses alike. We agree with the Biden Administration and many in Congress that the time is long-overdue for states and localities to remove unnecessary red tape and speed the deployment of ERAP benefits to those in need. This is the most effective way to address the underlying financial stress faced by America’s renters who have been adversely impacted by the pandemic.
What’s clear is that apartment residents have continued to meet their financial obligations in large part because of the federal support programs. It is time to end emergency eviction measures and instead focus on targeted efforts to support those residents that continue to face hardships through the broad and efficient distribution of rental assistance benefits.
Ahead of the expiration of the CDC eviction moratorium, NMHC released survey findings that highlight the extraordinary lengths multifamily firms have gone to help and support their residents. The most widely offered assistance options included:
- Payment plans – 100%
- Waived late fees – 96%
- Deferred payments – 78%
- Extended, shortened or other changes to lease terms – 58%
- Cash for keys (compensation for vacating a unit)– 54%
- Fee-free ability to charge rent on credit card – 50%
The survey also asked what additional steps firms took to support residents during the pandemic:
- Increased cleaning and sanitation – 95%
- Connecting residents with food banks, charities and other local support resources – 86%
- Informing residents of healthcare protocols and best practices – 86%
- Hosting virtual social or exercise events – 57%
- Creating on-site services at communities to support residents – 50%
- Made it easier to work from home – 49%
NMHC remains committed to keeping residents stably housed and participated in this week’s White House call to action to alert housing providers and residents about available resources. The Council also issued two new customizable templates housing providers can use to help inform residents about the availability of rental assistance (in English and Spanish). Those can be found on NMHC’s COVID-19 online Hub. Information for renters is available here, and housing providers is available here. Additional materials and resources on COVID-19 can be found here.
Based in Washington, D.C., the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) is the leadership of the apartment industry. We bring together the prominent owners, managers and developers who help create thriving communities by providing apartment homes for 40 million Americans, contributing $3.4 trillion annually to the economy. NMHC provides a forum for insight, advocacy and action that enables both members and the communities they help build to thrive. For more information, contact NMHC at 202/974-2300, e-mail the Council at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- NMHC Leads Coalition Opposing Eviction Moratorium Provision in Proposed ERAP Legislation
- Real Estate Coalition Letter Opposing Eviction Moratorium in H.R. 5196
- Representing the Nation’s Apartment Industry, Chairman and CEO of Waterton, David Schwartz, Testifies Before the House Committee on Financial Services
- NMHC Statement on the Supreme Court’s Decision to End the Nationwide Eviction Moratorium
- Supreme Court Blocks CDC Eviction Moratorium