As we are all navigating uncharted territory in some way during this time, landlord and tenants are struggling to maintain beneficial relationships across the country. The CARES Act eviction moratorium that took effect on March 27, 2020 has now run its course in many states leaving thousands of tenants behind on payments, and landlords unsure of how to handle it.
The federal moratorium restricted landlords of certain types of properties from filing new eviction proceedings for unpaid rent. It also disallowed the landlord from charging late fees or any other penalties related to non-payment of rent. Even after the moratorium expired, it required tenants to receive a 30 day notice, which could not be given until after the expiration date. Now that rent has come due, and some tenants have still been unable to return to work, landlord-tenant disputes are arising.
Landlords have a few options if they wish to work with tenants to bring rent current. The past due amounts can be spread out and calculated over the remainder of a lease term, by which monthly rent would increase to cover. Alternatively, a lease may be amended and its term extended to add past due rents onto the backend.
At the end of the day, it is usually more beneficial for a landlord to maintain occupancy of a property. Working out a plan and having a current tenant stay put is definitely less of a headache than having to go through eviction proceedings and find a new tenant. If you are either a landlord or a tenant who are a bit confused about your options at the moment, a real estate attorney can be a wealth of information regarding current legislation and your rights.