Evictions to ramp up next week as CARES Act protections expire

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Like many landlords right now, Adam Rudman feels conflicted.

“I cannot save everybody. I’m trying to do as much as we can. It’s hard to see people getting put out of their homes but eventually it’s also a business,” he said.

The owner of My Management, which manages multiple apartment complexes including Winbranch Apartments, says he’s preparing to start filing notices for evictions next week, as the CARES Act provision restricting landlords like him, with federally-backed mortgages, runs out this week.

“I think it’s going to be around 15 percent,” he said of the number of units he plans to evict.

That means more than 60 families at Winbranch would get 30-day notices next week.

And that’s in addition to the people whose landlords were not restricted by the CARES Act, or who already anticipated having trouble with rent.

Cindy Ettingoff heads Memphis Area Legal Services, who’s partnering with Memphis and Shelby County to distribute $2 million for coronavirus housing relief.

“You would’ve either lost your job, been furloughed or had hours cut. you could’ve had a child in daycare that the daycare closed,” she said of some of the ways to qualify.

Having to stay home to quarantine or take care of a sick family member also helps people qualify for the money.

She says since the website Home901.org opened last week, they’ve already gotten 1,000 applications.

“We’re almost to the point of, ‘Let us work with what we got, let us see,’” Ettingoff said.

Until then, she urged renters to talk with their landlords. Those like Rudman say they’ll take even small payments.

“We’re trying to work as much as possible,” he said.

If you do that, you can keep your case out of court. But not everyone will be able to do so.

Experts expected the courts to see a “tsunami” of Shelby County eviction cases starting in September.

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