The New York Times, February 6, 2021, Pandemic’s Toll on Housing:Falling Behind, Doubling Up
Eviction moratoriums don’t keep arrears from piling up, and aid to renters may not reach the most vulnerable.
As the pandemic enters its second year, millions of renters are struggling with a loss of income and with the insecurity of not knowing how long they will have a home. Their savings depleted, they are running up credit card debt to make the rent, or accruing months of overdue payments. Families are moving in together, offsetting the cost of housing by finding others to share it.
The nation has a plague of housing instability that was festering long before Covid-19, and the pandemic’s economic toll has only made it worse. A study by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia showed that tenants who lost jobs in the pandemic had amassed $11 billion in rental arrears, while a broader measure by Moody’s Analytics, which includes all delinquent renters, estimated that as of January they owed $53 billion in back rent, utilities and late fees