COVID-19 Housing Resources
Listed below are two summarized actions that the state and federal government have taken during the week of August 31, 2020 to halt evictions and provide mortgage protection for individuals who have lost work or have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and don’t have other housing options.
Center for Disease Control: Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19
To qualify for the eviction protection order through December 31, 2020, a tenant must sign the eviction protection certification confirming the following requirements:
- I have used best efforts to obtain all available government assistance for rent or housing;
- I expect to earn no more than $99,000 in annual income for Calendar Year 2020 (or no more than $198,000 if filing a joint tax return), were not required to report any income in 2019 to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, or received an Economic Impact Payment (stimulus check) pursuant to Section 2201 of the CARES Act;
- I am unable to pay my full rent or make a full housing payment due to substantial loss of household income, loss of compensable hours of work or wages, lay-offs, or extraordinary out-of-pocket medical expenses;
- I am using best efforts to make timely partial payments that are as close to the full payment as the individual’s circumstances may permit, taking into account other nondiscretionary expenses;
- If evicted I would likely become homeless, need to move into a homeless shelter, or need to move into a new residence shared by other people who live in close quarters because I have no other available housing options;
- I understand that I must still pay rent or make a housing payment, and comply with other obligations that I may have under my tenancy, lease agreement, or similar contract. I further understand that fees, penalties, or interest for not paying rent or making a housing payment on time as required by my tenancy, lease agreement, or similar contract may still be charged or collected; and
- I further understand that at the end of this temporary halt on evictions on December 31, 2020, my housing provider may require payment in full for all payments not made prior to and during the temporary halt and failure to pay may make me subject to eviction pursuant to state and local laws.
The declaration form must be submitted to the tenant’s landlord, owner of the residential property where they live, or other person who has a right to have them evicted or removed from where they live. Each adult listed on the lease, rental agreement, or housing contract needs to complete and provide a declaration.
Tenants can still be evicted for reasons other than not paying rent or making a housing payment.
This order does not preclude the charging or collecting of fees, penalties, or interest as a result of the failure to pay rent or other housing payments on a timely basis, under the terms of any applicable contract. For more information on this program, visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-eviction-declaration.html.
California Tenant, Homeowner, and Small Landlord Relief and Stabilization Act of 2020
- No COVID-19-Related Evictions Until February 1, 2021
- Tenant cannot be evicted for a COVID-19 related hardship that accrued between March 4 – August 31, 2020 if tenant returns declaration of hardship under penalty of perjury.
- Tenant cannot be evicted for a COVID-19 related hardship that accrues between September 1, 2020 – January 31, 2021 if tenant returns declaration of hardship under penalty of perjury and pays at least 25% of the rent due.
- Higher income tenants (over $100K household income or over 130% of median household income, whichever is higher) must provide documentation to support their declaration upon a landlord’s request.
- Applies to all residential tenants (including mobile home tenants), regardless of immigration status.
- Tenants Still Responsible for Paying Unpaid Amounts to Landlords
- So long as the tenant with COVID-19 related hardship follows the bill’s procedures, any unpaid rent due between March 4, 2020 – January 31, 2021 is not a ground/basis for eviction, but is still owed to the landlord as a form of consumer debt.
- Small claims court jurisdiction is temporarily expanded to allow landlords to recover these amounts.
- Landlords may begin to recover this debt on March 1, 2021. This expanded small claims court provision sunsets on February 1, 2025.
- Additional Legal and Financial Protections for Tenants
- Extends notice period for nonpayment of rent from 3 to 15 days to provide tenant additional time to respond to landlord’s notice to pay rent or quit.
- Requires landlords to provide hardship declaration forms in a different language if rental agreement was negotiated in a different language.
- Provides tenants a backstop if they have a good reason for failing to return the hardship declaration within 15 days.
- Requires landlords to provide tenants a notice detailing their rights under the Act.
- Limits public disclosure (“masking”) of eviction cases involving nonpayment of rent between March 4, 2020 – January 31, 2021.
- Protects tenants against being evicted for “just cause” if the landlord is shown to be evicting the tenant for COVID-19-related nonpayment of rent.
- Statewide Consistency and a Pause on Local Measures
- Existing local ordinances can remain in place until they expire and future local action cannot undermine this Act’s framework.
- Requires ordinances that provide a repayment schedule to begin repayment no later than March 1, 2021.
- Clarifies that nothing in the Act affects a local jurisdiction’s ability to adopt an ordinance that requires just cause, consistent with state law, provided it does not affect rental payments before January 31, 2021.
- Protections for Small Landlords
- Extends the Homeowners’ Bill of Rights’ anti-foreclosure protections to small landlords, 1-4 units, non-owner occupied.
- Provides new accountability and transparency provisions to protect small landlord borrowers who request CARES-compliant forbearance, and provides the borrower who is harmed by a material violation with a cause of action.
- Significantly Increases Penalties on Landlords Who Do Not Follow Court Evictions Process
- Increases penalties on landlords who resort to self-help (i.e., locking the tenant out, throwing property out onto the curb, shutting off utilities) to evict a tenant, rather than going through the required court process.
HOMEOWNERS AND LANDLORD PROTECTION
- Protection for Homeowners
- Applies to homeowners and landlords with four (4) or fewer properties, whether those properties are owner-occupied or not, and who have had difficulty making mortgage payments because of COVID-19.
- Federally backed mortgage (FHA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Veterans Administration (VA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
- Homeowners/Landlords can request forbearance pursuant to the federal CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) to help them avoid a foreclosure timeline. They can contact their mortgage servicer – the company they send their mortgage payment to – to find out if their loan is federally backed.
- Non-Federal backed mortgage
- Homeowners/Landlords can contact your servicer requesting forbearance. If no forbearance is offered, their lender must provide them with a detailed description explaining why forbearance request was denied, stating the exact reasons for the denial.
- If their lender’s explanation identifies missing information or errors in their request, they then have 21 days to update and correct these issues. Additional homeowner protections and lender requirements before a bank can file a notice of default on their mortgage include:
- A requirement for lenders to file the forbearance denial notice along with the declaration when recording a notice of default.
- The ability for them to contest either the 30-day contact or the forbearance denial notice. (The 30-day contact refers to the minimum 30 days a lender must wait after contacting a borrower to seek payment before filing a Notice of Default.)
- The right for a homeowner/landlord to file a cause of action (lawsuit) if their lender harms them by violating the law.
For more information on the housing relief programs, please visit https://landlordtenant.dre.ca.gov/.
California Housing Finance Agency: Supports the needs of renters and homebuyers by providing financing and programs
City of Riverside: Office of Homeless Solutions
City of Riverside: Housing Authority
Community Associations Institute: Resources for Community Associations
Fair Housing of Riverside County: Counseling services available to assist residents with landlord-tenat concerns and mortgage assistance.
The Emergency Rental Assistance Program provides rental assistance grants to renter(s) who meet certain requirements and are in danger of eviction due to loss of income related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The grants do not have to be repaid and will cover up to three months’ rent at up to 100% of the unpaid past due amount.
- Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.: (800) 655-1812
- Monday through Friday, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.: (951) 334-8068, (951) 334-7205, and (951) 334-7275
For application assistance call: (951) 682-6581 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
HUD: US Department of Housing and Urban Development Covid-19 Resources
LightHouse Social Service Centers Veteran Resources: Resources for Emergency Housing Assistance, Rapid Re-Housing and Homeless Prevention Services for SSVF eligible veterans.
- Susan Kershner, Lead Case Manager LightHouse Social Service Centers SSVF Program:
- Email: SusanK@LightHouse-ssc.org
- Phone: (951) 571-3533 ex. 805
- Rochelle Lewis-Kerr, Housing Manager LightHouse Social Service Centers SSVF Program:
- Email: RochelleL@LightHouse-ssc.org
- Phone: (951) 571-3533 ex. 802
- Elizabeth Alonso, Intake Specialist LightHouse Social Service Centers SSVF Program:
- Email: ElizabethA@LightHouse-ssc.org
- Phone: (909) 494-6676
Riverside County’s United Lift Rental Assistance Program: The United Lift Rental Assistance Program is a coordinated effort between Riverside County, United Way of the Inland Valleys, and Lift To Rise to keep 10,000 Riverside County families and residents housed between the months of June and November by providing one-time support in direct rental assistance.
FAQ's en español
Volunteer Center of Riverside County: Dial 2-1-1
Federal and state government mortgage relief programs have been put in place with the support of private lenders to provide mortgage forbearance and grace periods to homeowners and renters who are struggling financially as a result of the COVID-19 health crisis.
What can I do if I cannot pay my home mortgage as a result of the COVID-19 emergency?
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) with the support of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Federal Home Loan Banks have provided some financial relief to assist homeowners who have been impacted by the coronavirus may be eligible for a mortgage forbearance plan to reduce or suspend their mortgage payments for up to 12 months during which, you won’t incur late fees, you won’t have delinquencies reported to the credit bureaus, and foreclosure and other legal proceedings will be suspended.
In addition, Governor Newsom’s office along with the support of JPMorgan Chase, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo, and nearly 200 state-chartered banks, credit unions, and servicers have agreed to provide major financial relief for millions of Californian homeowners (see list of financial institutions participating here). Eligibility will be determined by individual lenders and homeowners may receive relief in the form of a 90 day grace period for mortgage payments with no negative impacts to their credit scores as a result of the relief, and relief from mortgage related fees and Certificate of Deposits (CD). There will also be a 60 day moratorium where financial institutions will not initiate foreclosure sales or evictions, consistent with applicable guidelines.
Please note these are not loan forgiveness programs. The mortgage relief efforts initiated by the state and federal government are intended to provide temporary relief to homeowners during the COVID-19 crisis, however, each loan holder will need to work out a payment plan with their lender.
Please note that homeowners are encouraged to continue making at least partial mortgage payments to ease prolonged financial hardship and have less interest accrue on the principal balance.
This information and more can be found here: