Journal Article

COVID-19 Impacts on Housing Stability in the Twelfth Federal Reserve District

Abstract: In the face of layoffs and furloughs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many renters and homeowners across the country have struggled to make their mortgage or rent payments. Banks have provided flexibility to borrowers through loan deferrals and forbearance during the pandemic. The federal CARES Act provided stimulus payments to low- and moderate-income people and expanded unemployment insurance payments by states, allowing many to continue paying their bills during the early months of the pandemic. The CARES Act also included rental assistance to be disbursed by states, a moratorium on evictions for renters in federal housing assistance programs, and a foreclosure moratorium on properties with federally-backed mortgages. Some states and localities passed eviction moratoria of their own. These measures placed a temporary pause on many evictions and foreclosures. However, concerns about housing stability remain for renters and homeowners, many of whom continue to experience unemployment or income loss due to the pandemic, which has had disproportionate health, housing, and economic impacts on communities of color. This brief provides a snapshot of the issues facing low- and moderate-income renters, homeowners, and small, “mom and pop” landlords in the Twelfth Federal Reserve District. Our Community Development team conducted twelve semi-structured interviews with nonprofit community organizations and a public housing agency in July 2020. Most of the organizations we spoke with primarily serve low- and moderate-income households and offer housing counseling and other services. Some organizations operate and manage affordable housing developments and serve the rental tenants on their properties, while other organizations primarily serve homeowners or first-time homebuyers. We asked whether homeowners, renters, and small landlords were falling behind on housing payments or experiencing financial instability, and we asked what assistance was available or lacking to support them.

Keywords: covid-19; renters; homeowners; mortgage payments; rent payments; CARES Act; housing stability; diversity;

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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Part of Series: Community Development Research Brief

Publication Date: 2020-10-08

Volume: 2020

Issue: 06

Pages: 06

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