California Officials Plead Another Extension for Moratorium Evictions

By the end of January, the moratorium on evictions in California would soon meet its scheduled shutdown, leaving many Bay Area homeowners filled with worry about their residences. To address the issue, state legislators proposed a bill that would help extend the suspensions for one more year.

The dilemma has reached the state officials since August 11 of this year, where Santa Clara County’s board of supervisors’ members gathered together for a formal assembly. According to official reports, the board superintendents discussed different solutions on how they can prolong protections for homeowners during the pandemic. Despite the eviction moratorium placed during that time, residents could not help but wonder how they would pay back the rental fees for their houses.

Apart from homeowners, local entrepreneurs also tried to keep their businesses intact by negotiating their lease conditions to potential house buyers. A perfect example is the popular restaurant chain Flights in Mountain View, which has opened several branches across the Bay Area. The establishment sits quiet and empty all around the region after the business owner’s on-going leasehold arbitrations with the landlord come to a close.

Flights’ operator and owner Alex Hult revealed his repeated conciliations with the proprietor. According to Hult, both sides plead their cases, and he stated that he could not afford the landlord’s requested rental fees. Despite Hult’s decent offer, the lease owner filed a lawsuit against him after conducting multiple negotiations. Furthermore, Hult told the news media that his wife called him in the middle of work in tears after someone aggressively knocked on their house’s front door to inform them of the filed litigation.

The September Lease Extension Proposal

The previously mentioned setback is one of the main reasons behind the officials’ wishes to extend the eviction moratorium. As such, several of the board members suggested prolonging the suspensions until September of this year. Board president Supervisor Cindy Chavez has requested everyone to join hands with them in making the extension possible. According to Chavez, the board would readily commit to becoming overprotective for the sake of their citizens’ interests. She and other board members strive to come to an agreement that could benefit the business, government, and non-profit communities across the state.

A recent study co-authored by the Law Foundation of Silicon Valley showed the impacts of moratorium extensions on local businesses. Based on the results, researchers revealed that the county would leave at least 43,000 residents homeless in case the district fails to prolong current protections.

Renters’ and Proprietors’ Perspectives on the Moratorium Issue

According to the Affordable Housing Network’s tenant-right advocate Sandy Perry, providing rent forgiveness would demand extra efforts for it to push forward. Perry pointed out that many people lost their jobs due to the pandemic, causing many of them to fail to pay housing rental fees. As such, she urges the extension of moratorium evictions to aid affected residents.

On the other hand, property owners also voiced out their sides concerning the matter. Several leaseholders requested people to listen to their worries, revealing that they are on the brink of losing their businesses due to many tenant’s failures in paying their monthly rent. 

California Apartment Association’s public affairs vice president Anil Babbar affirmed the previously mentioned concern. According to him, many landowners tried their best to help affected tenants by offering waivers for late fees and payment delays. Babbar stated that despite those efforts, proprietors also have bills to pay and also struggle to find money as payment without the use of rental assistance.