Eviction moratorium set to expire at end of week but landlords not 'popping corks on champagne'

Posted at 7:44 PM, Jul 27, 2021

TROY (WXYZ) — For those who haven't paid their rent due to factors related to the pandemic, the moratorium on evictions is set to expire Saturday.

"I want to make it very clear that it's not like landlords are popping corks on champagne, saying, 'Oh, we're finally going to get to experience this mass wave of evictions,' that's not the case at all," said attorney Matthew Paletz of Paletz Law in Troy.

Paletz represents a number of property owners who feel like have been stuck holding the bag on monies owed to them since the moratorium went into effect in 2020.

The good news, Paletz said, is that many tenants have been working with their landlords to take advantage of the COVID Emergency Rental Assistance (CERA).

"For those tenants that just have not been participants of that program, and have kind of used this moratorium as an extra opportunity to shield from their responsibilities, those are the cases that need to be heard in court at this time," Paletz said.

In Oakland County alone, there was $40 million dollars from the U.S. government's Emergency Rental Assistance Program.

Those eligible have to have been impacted by the pandemic and the money can be used to help with rent and/or utilities.

"We've already provided about $12 million in assistance here in Oakland County," said Karen Bertram, Quality Director and CERA Director (interim) for the Community Housing Network (CHN).

CHN is a nonprofit organization that provides housing and housing resources to those who are homeless, facing homelessness, disabled, low income, and others considered vulnerable.

"They don't want to lose their homes. They're trying everything they can to stay housed and they don't want to be in that situation," Bertram told 7 Action News.

Click here to visit the Community Housing Network's website for assistance if you live in Oakland County.

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) has information on how to apply for help and more information on who is eligible.

You can also click here to access the MSHDA list of contacts, county by county.