Landlords say the eviction moratorium, which was recently extended in New York through January 15, 2022 due to the coronavirus pandemic in a special session held by lawmakers in Albany last week will have long lasting effects.
“I don’t make enough to subsidize city rental properties,” Rochester-area landlord Rich Tyson told 13WHAM. He became a landlord to invest in neighborhoods that were not being improved through other means. Altogether he owes $52,000 in taxes to the City of Rochester and Monroe County- and some of that is in arrears.
“Mortgages, insurances: all these things are an emergency today if they don’t get paid. So (the taxes) are a bill a lot of us have had to put on the back burner,” he continued. “The majority of that is from losses I’ve had to take for housing people for free for a year and a half.”
The Finger Lakes Landlord Association has been calling for an end to the eviction moratorium for months, but landlord advocacy groups have been told that federal aid – billions set aside for New York landlords – will be distributed more quickly to make things right for them.
The long-term impact will be property tax payments, landlords say. Over the next several months – and even years – tax payments will inevitably be impacted. The threat that poses to communities of all shapes and sizes is significant.
Another issue with the eviction moratorium involves what courts have, or haven’t been doing. Prior to a Supreme Court ruling – people were able to claim a financial loss due to the coronavirus pandemic without having a court fact-check it. This allowed evictions to pause, with landlords making the case that many were taking advantage of the situation.
It’s unclear how much faster the state will get federal funds out to landlords or tenants. Governor Kathy Hochul promised to simplify the process, but a state Comptroller’s audit found that very little of the money had actually been distributed as of two weeks ago.