Extension on eviction moratorium helps renters but landlords’ say it adds to their struggles

In this May 7, 2020 photo, a store for rent sign hangs in the window of an empty storefront in the Soho neighborhood of Manhattan in New York. Many businesses devastated by the coronavirus pandemic are expected to abandon offices and storefronts. The changes are happening because more employees are working from home, and more people are shopping online. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer) (Mary Altaffer, Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Gov. Ron DeSantis extended the moratorium on evictions and foreclosures earlier this week for the third time since the coronavirus closures began causing mass unemployment across Florida.

DeSantis issued the extension on the executive order hours before the current order was set to expire on July 1, now the moratorium is good until Aug. 1.

And while renters who cannot afford to pay their rent told News 6 they were thankful, some landlords have said the move adds to their struggle.

Diane Mehrlich is the owner of Mehrlich Properties and Real Estate. She said she manages about 30 properties.

“I’m afraid that a lot of my owners cannot afford two more months of no rent,” Mehrlich said.

Mehrlich said, while some of her clients aren’t receiving rent, they still have payments they need to make, like taxes, insurance, mortgage and maintenance on property.

“They are depleting their savings accounts and they’re listing their homes,” Mehrlich said.

Mehrlich said, while renters have received some financial assistance, like funding through the CARES Act, she said the landlords haven’t received much help.

“In March, they started deferring and forbearing the mortgage payments for them, but it only lasts 60 to 90 days, there’s nothing beyond that; most banks will not allow them to have another deferment,” Mehrlich said.

She said while they want to show compassion to the renters who are struggling, she would like to see help for the landlords who are hurting, too.

About the Author:

Lauren Cervantes was born and raised in the Midwest but calls Florida her second home. She joined News 6 in August 2019 as a reporter.