On Monday Governor Newsom signed legislation protecting tenants during these crazy pandemic times. The new law states that landlords cannot evict tenants who have declared their inability to pay rent for reasons related to COVID (like job loss illness, illness of a family member, etc.). It is believed it will protect many lower income tenants, who are most susceptible to loss of income during the pandemic.
The new law also protects landlords from foreclosures due to non-payment of mortgages (which could undoubtedly arise from tenants not paying rent).
The terms of the new law include:
1. No tenant can be evicted for not paying rent due to COVID-19 reasons, up to February 21, 2021 if the related hardship accrued between March 4 – August 31, 2020. The tenant must provide a declaration of hardship according to the legislation’s timelines. Tenants will still be required to pay unpaid rent balances to their landlords, but such cannot be the reason for eviction.
2. If the COVID-19 related hardship occurred between September 1, 2020 – January 31, 2021, tenants will be required to pay at least 25% of the rent due to avoid eviction.
Other terms of the new law will be put in place to protect tenants and also to protect landlords from foreclosure, and changes are made to landlord obligations when dealing with tenants who cannot pay rent due to COVID-19. If you are a landlord make sure you understand your new duties. To read more about the new law click here.