CDARPO’s slogan has always been “Landlords helping landlords” and in these unprecedented times, the community of landlords needs help more than ever. We are business owners and investors providing our communities with the basic human need of shelter. We take risks to do this and some of us make little or break even with the prospect of finally collecting income when we retire and have paid back our loans. It is unfortunate that policies have put us at odds with the very communities we aim to serve. We understand that there is a global pandemic that is affecting many of our tenants. None of us want to displace families. The measures that have been put in place have irreversible consequences that will forever change the landscape. With no assistance for landlords who are unable to collect rent, restricted from processing evictions, and skill required to make loan payments; many of us will be forced to sell or foreclose. This will leave our properties vulnerable to be bought by larger corporations, creating yet another consolidation. I want to share a first-hand account from a member who asked to remain anonymous:
“I am the single apartment building property owner in the city of Albany. I have been negatively impacted by the inability to process an eviction on my tenants. One of my Tenants has maintained employment throughout 2020 and has refused to pay rent. I have made the tenant aware of various government programs and that if they are experiencing hardship related to Covid-19 I am willing to put in place a payment plan. The tenant has informed me that they will not be paying rent and would like me to execute an eviction and is waiting for the formal notice. The Courthouse has informed me that no eviction judgments will be issues during 2020. This tenant has not paid rent since May of 2020. Again I am a single property landlord that requires the rental income to maintain the building and pay expense which includes mortgage and a Maintenance employee.
My banker has informed me that I can defer my Mortgage payments but the payments are not forgiven just “paused” and will require a balloon payment once the deferment period has ended, this does not seem to be a viable solution.”
I have heard countless stories just like the one. We need our voices to be heard and politicians to understand that these rules will ultimately hurt the people they were designed to protect. When a landlord is forced out of business, they are no longer able to provide shelter, and tenants end up displaced. No one wants this to happen. I encourage our members to share their stories with us and encourage others to join CDARPO and do the same.