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EAP News
June 23, 2021

Supports for Tenants and Property Owners during the Post-pandemic Transition

Stacey J. Drubner, JD, LICSW, MPH

As we transition out of the Pandemic, many people are still concerned about making rent or mortgage payments. Whether your family was impacted by a health issue or is coping with lost income, you can still access assistance. Although the CDC Moratorium on evictions ended on July 31st, there are financial supports and legal protections available to help you keep or stay in your home.

Rental and Mortgage Help

Payment Assistance

Rent and mortgage assistance programs are still in place to assist both tenants and landlords. Moratoriums and protections do not forgive payments. Eventually you must pay these amounts in full. The programs below have varied eligibility requirements. Whether or not you are able to benefit from government assistance, it is important to communicate with your landlord or lender to determine if there is some flexibility or room for negotiation.  Sometimes it may be helpful to at least pay something to show a good faith effort in meeting the requirements of your lease or mortgage.


General Housing Assistance


Legal Assistance

Update on the Commonwealth of MA eviction protections (effective June 2021)

  • Tenants with Pending Rental Relief Applications: The courts will continue offering temporary continuances to tenants who have filed applications for rental assistance, thereby preventing evictions in cases where tenants are unable to pay rent due to COVID-19-related financial hardship until April of 2022.
  • Helping Tenants Understand their Legal Options: Landlords notifying tenants to leave a dwelling for nonpayment of rent must also provide a form that reads: “This notice to quit is not an eviction. You do not need to immediately leave your unit. You are entitled to a legal proceeding in which you can defend against the eviction. Only a court order can force you to leave your unit.”  The form must also include information on rental assistance programs, applicable trial court rules and any relevant federal or state legal restrictions on residential evictions.


Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage holder obligations for tenants

Property owners with Enterprise-backed multifamily mortgages who enter into a new or modified forbearance agreement must:

  • Inform tenants in writing about tenant protections available during the property owner’s forbearance and repayment periods
  • Agree not to evict tenants solely for the nonpayment of rent while the property is in forbearance
  • Give tenants at least a 30-day notice to vacate
  • Not charge tenants late fees or penalties for nonpayment of rent
  • Allow tenant flexibility in the repayment of back-rent over time, and not necessarily in a lump sum

 

Check to see if a property is financed by Freddie Mac? or Fannie Mae?


Other Legal Supports


Resources for Balancing your Budget for Bills unrelated to Housing

Statistics show that many people are meeting rent requirements, but maybe at the expense of paying other bills. Below are some resources for managing debt. If you find yourself struggling with making ends meet.

 

Contacting the EAP

For confidential assistance with any housing or financial issue, or to request an appointment, employees, IHP student and eligible household members can contact the EAP at 866-724-4327, or via our online form.

 

 

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