‘Just give us a little bit more time’: NC tenants want to keep eviction moratorium longer

North Carolina news

GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — Some residents in the Triad are still looking to keep the state-wide moratorium intact until the pandemic is over.

A group of NC realtors are asking Gov. Roy Cooper to end the rental moratorium two weeks earlier than its original ending date of June 30.

The moratorium started in September of 2020, and it prohibits landlords from evicting tenants for nonpayment of rent because of the pandemic.

Kathy Robertson, who volunteers with NC Realtors as Chair of Property Management Division, said there are other ways to pay rent without the moratorium where renters can still stay in their homes and get small property owners their rent on time.

“The HOPE Program is a safety net to help those folks. A lot of people have gone back to work. We recognize that. But we also recognize that a lot of our tenants are in the hospitality industry. Some of them have not gone back to work for whatever reason,” said Robertson.

The group has sent a letter to the governor asking to lift the moratorium just as he lifted other restrictions set in place by coronavirus pandemic.

“[Do] not forget the small business property owners, the mom-and-pop landlords who are still under the heavy restrictions of the eviction moratorium,” said Robertson. 

Leslie Norwood has been renting her home for the past four years and said some people are abusing the system, but those trying to find work and pay bills with what they have shouldn’t be blamed for their wrongdoings.

“Just give us a little bit more time or let it extend a little bit more so we can have a little bit more time to get ourselves right [like] we should be,” said Norwood.

Robertson said the best solution for everyone is to end the moratorium and utilize programs like the “HOPE Program” that gives rent and utility assistance to renters experiencing financial hardship due to the economic impacts of COVID-19.

Robertson added that tenants who get the opportunity to pay rent through the “HOPE Program” still can’t be evicted until October. 

The program’s contract tells landlords they can’t move towards evictions for three months after they receive rent money.

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