As Covid drags on, many individuals and families find that they are less worried about catching corona and more worried about how their crippled financial situation may affect their ability to continue living in their homes and apartments.
How Covid Destroyed Renters’ Security
Through the start of the corona shutdowns, the government worked to provide moratoriums that would postpone rent payments. While these helped struggling families to get from one month to the next without fear of being homeless due to eviction, they also came with some consequences. Rather than doing away with rent payments, these mainly just pushed them back, meaning that renters would still owe just as much money, or more with late fees and interest, causing a snowball effect. The end result is millions of renters behind by several thousands of dollars on their rent that is now due.
Where Moratoriums Currently Stand in Philadelphia
While the government continues to try to implement provisions to help renters, the long-lasting time and impact of the pandemic are making it difficult. The CDC put a rent moratorium extension in place that was supposed to last through October 3, 2021, but the U.S. Supreme Court nixed the extension by striking it down. Now, rent relief is being handled more on a state and local level with many support programs, like the extra unemployment aid and student loan forbearance, ending in the upcoming months.
What to Do if You’re Facing an Eviction from Your Apartment
With rent due immediately, many tenants are feeling strain and frustration as they try to make up for all their missed payments before they are kicked out of their homes. Thankfully, the Emergency Rental Assistance Program provided $25 billion dollars for tenants who were behind on their rent, and most of this money is still untouched. On the downside, filing for these funds can be a lengthy process and certain criteria have to be met to get the money. If you have fallen behind on your rent, it’s important to start taking action immediately so that you can avoid an eviction. You can do this by talking to your landlord and trying to work out a more manageable payment plan that can help you to catch up. Even if you can’t make the payments, start looking into rent assistance programs and let your landlord know that this is your plan. By knowing that you are working to get money to pay your rent, your landlord will be more likely to work with you and try to help you out.
Lastly, if you see that eviction is coming soon and have no foreseeable way to cover your rent, you should pursue a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. This would not only help you to save your finances but also puts an automatic stay in place – meaning that you can’t be evicted from your home.
How a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Can Help Impact Evictions
When you file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it means that you are likely to see most if not all of your debt completely erased through the court system. While the pandemic may have gotten you behind on many of your bills such as credit card payments and car loans, you can use the bankruptcy to completely wipe away these debts and give yourself a fresh start. In some cases, rental debt can also be cleared through bankruptcy, but this typically results in losing your home after the bankruptcy is finished. The money you save can then be put toward starting a more secure financial future.
With rent due and financial help programs ending, it can seem overwhelming for those who have fallen behind through the pandemic. Thanks to a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you can start to take back control of your finances while remaining in your home and working to get caught up on rent. Contact our law offices to learn more about how bankruptcy might affect you and how it is a good option for those behind on rent payments.