While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is set to extend a moratorium on evictions that was set to expire Wednesday night, more will face eviction as it's going to get tougher to prove COVID-19 is the reason renters can't pay.
The clock is ticking for Denise Belanger, who was told by a Broward County judge that she has until next week to vacate her townhouse — her home for the last seven years.
"COVID hit. Everybody got scared," Belanger said. "In November, my son was laid off. My brother lost his clientele because he couldn’t walk, and then I was making probably one-quarter of what I usually do."
After going through mediation, the judge determined Belanger's landlord had gone through the proper process to get the property back. Now Belanger is trying to track down where they will go next but said roadblocks are at every turn due to the eviction.
Broward County Mayor Steve Geller said funds from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 are on the way.
“Broward County last Friday selected a vendor who will be administering only the most recent Biden rescue plan money, which is the largest pool of money that we have,” Geller said.
In Broward, there are more than 2,400 evictions filed, yet only 10% of renters presented the necessary paperwork to prove they couldn’t pay due to COVID-19.
"The CARES Act or the Biden Rescue Plan have fairly strict requirements on the type of proof that is required,” Geller said.
Those who qualify get 12 months of rental assistance, but there are tighter income requirements for these newer funds. Renters have to produce things like prior paystubs.
For more information on finding rental assistance, click on the following links: