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Evictions moratorium is set to end June 31

Posted at 11:03 PM, Jun 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-24 16:17:05-04

The pandemic has put many Central Texans in a tight spot, including Aaron Elscott who faced eviction earlier this year.

“At the time I got the late notice for my rent I was out of state because my grandfather had passed away due to Covid," said Elscott. "When I came back my hours were cut short from work."

Elscott was cut from his job due to COVID concerns. He struggled for the past four months to find steady pay and make rent, so the eviction moratorium helped the veteran and his family keep a roof over their heads.

“I’ve been making payments here and there. I haven’t been finding work. I just got a new job so hopefully it’ll come in,” said Elscott.

While the moratorium is helping local renter, it’s hurting local landlords like Sheldon Smith. He said the moratorium didn’t offer any protection for owners who still had to cover expenses, pay the mortgage and provide for their families.

“We have to let people stay in there," said Smith. "Stay in there without any assistance. We felt like the government overstepped their role."

Smith said several tenants took advantage of the moratorium and actually kept rental assistance money for them selves.

“I basically didn’t rent my property out until I figured out what they’re gonna do with this Moratorium,” said Smith.

The moratorium is set to expire at the end of this month, Smith said it’s about time.

“We went through the storm and now it’s calm," said Smith. "Let’s just think everything out and get back to business."

However, others say it’s still too early.

“It’s saving a lot of people from living in the streets people that don’t deserve it," said Smith. "There’s veterans out there like myself who did not get a good break."

There have been talks on Capitol Hill about extending the moratorium another month. Both Elscott and Smith agree than lawmakers should find ways to help renters and landlords move past the pandemic.