Lehigh Valley landlords squeezed by pandemic eviction moratorium

Written by on January 15, 2021

Lehigh Valley landlords squeezed by pandemic eviction moratorium

By Chloe Nouvelle

January 15, 2021

Many Americans have been struggling to pay rent during the pandemic.  Nationwide, Americans owe more than $70 billion in back rent. It’s not only tenants who are hurting. Many Lehigh Valley landlords are feeling the squeeze. 

Listen to the story.

Alan Jennings runs the Community Action Committee of the Lehigh Valley. He is widely known as a strong advocate for tenants and workers. But he says landlords are owed thousands of dollars in back rent. And not enough people are thinking about the tough situation these property owners are in. 

“Many landlords are just regular people that happen to buy a house and thought they could make a little bit of money renting out, you know, the other half or whatever. And we forget about them, it’s not fair,” Jennings says. 

He says the loss of income makes it hard for some landlords to maintain their units and keep them in good condition. 

“I do hear from landlords saying how am I supposed to make it work? I have a mortgage that I have to pay back at the bank. I didn’t sign up for it to be a free housing service,” he says.

Jennings says people have to understand landlords have bills to pay too.

Congress passed a national eviction moratorium last year. But it will soon expire. If lawmakers do not extend the moratorium, evictions could resume on February 1st.

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