WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Center for Disease Control issued a nationwide temporary halt on residential evictions while Americans struggle financially amid the pandemic, concerned evictions would counteract attempts to reduce the spread of the virus.
The Trump administration ordered the eviction halt to, set to begin September 4, to continue through December 31 2020 as many have lost work or taken a significant loss in income prompted by COVID-19 related shutdowns and safety regulations.
The new order states that a “landlord . . . shall not evict any covered person from any residential property in any State or U.S. territory” in which there are COVID-19 cases.
Advocates say as many as millions of tenants could but put out of their homes through eviction unless something is done to reinstate expanded unemployment benefits.
“It was estimated that nearly 20% of all renters would be facing eviction due to COVID-19 which could be catastrophic to our community,” says Sally Stang, Housing & Community Services department director. “We must concentrate on connecting eligible renters with emergency rent assistance to help stabilize not only tenants but also landlords.”
The Wichita Housing Authority Housing Choice Voucher program service area includes all of Sedgwick and Butler counties and Harvey County outside of the city of Newton. Applications are available at: https://wichita.apply4housing.com. The Public Housing waitlist is currently closed at this time.
Though this move will keep tenants safe, the ban does little in the way of offering landlords recoup unpaid rent.
Suppose you rent an apartment, house, or mobile home. In that case, you are required to prove you are unable to pay rent do to COVID-19 related job loss or reduction of income, you don’t make more than $99,000 a year — or twice that if filing a joint tax return — and that you have no other option if evicted other than homelessness or living with more people in close proximity.
To qualify a form provided by the Federal Government must be completed by those in residence.
The order does not freeze rent or relieve tenants from obligations to pay back rent. The moratorium also doesn’t keep landlords from collecting fees, penalties, or interest resulting from a failure to pay rent.
The Wichita Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program wait list is open and accepting applications for residents seeking government assistance for rent or housing. The program provides rent assistance to income-eligible families in order to make housing affordable.
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