Evictions postponed until July 1

Published: Jun. 2, 2020 at 4:41 PM EDT
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By: Mike Vasilinda | Capitol News Service

June 2, 2020

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CNS) -- The latest figures show the number of people paying rent dropped by almost 10% from the month of April to the first week of May.

The governor has extended a moratorium on evictions so renters will not have to face losing their home until at least the first of July.

The Florida Apartment Association reports the number of people paying rent on time has dropped.

“So at the end of April, for conventional apartment units in Florida, we show a 93% collection rate. As of May 6 we had 84.1% of conventional apartment units had paid their rent,” said Amanda Gill with the association.

Gill told us owners and managers are working with tenants.

“Some of my communities are providing payment plans. Some are offering rent deferment,” said Gill.

Late Monday, just hours before a ban on evictions was set to expire, Governor Ron DeSantis extended the eviction moratorium until July 1.

Property Manager Kent Strauss is worried it will send the wrong message.

“Because there is a differentiation between those that lost their jobs and their incomes, to the ones who are still working and are sort of playing the landlord game,” said Strauss.

Senate Democratic Leader Audrey Gibson had urged the governor to extend the eviction moratorium.

“People need to be in a safe place to live. And not end up homeless,” said Gibson.

Strauss’ company manages about 500 properties for just under 200 owners.

He said only about 30 renters aren’t living up to their responsibilities.

But as more people are going back to work, Strauss told us more people appear are coming forward with at least partial payments as a sign of good faith.

A full picture of rent payments should be available in about a week to 10 days.

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