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Eviction filings are up more than 50% in some cities compared to pre-pandemic levels

New data from Eviction Lab shows cities like Houston, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Nashville have some of the highest rates

Eviction filings have risen more than 50% in some cities when compared to pre-pandemic levels, as expiring relief measures and economic volatility play havoc with the finances of renters in certain parts of the country.

This is according to data from the Eviction Lab at Princeton University, as reported by the Associated Press.

“Protections have ended, the federal moratorium is obviously over, and emergency rental assistance money has dried up in most places,” Daniel Grubbs-Donovan, research specialist at the Eviction Lab told the AP. “Across the country, low-income renters are in an even worse situation than before the pandemic due to things like massive increases in rent during the pandemic, inflation and other pandemic-era related financial difficulties.”

Eviction Lab tracks data in roughly 36 cities and 10 states, finding that eviction filings are more than 50% higher in certain areas. Landlords file about 3.6 million eviction cases each year, according to the organization.

Among the cities with the highest rates, Houston came in the highest. Evictions there were 56% higher in April and 50% higher in May, according to the data. In Minneapolis/St. Paul, rates were 106% higher in March, 55% higher in April and 63% higher in May. Nashville was 35% and Phoenix was 33% higher in May, while Rhode Island was 32% higher in May.

“The latest data mirrors trends that started last year, with the Eviction Lab finding nearly 970,000 evictions filed in locations it tracks — a 78.6% increase compared to 2021, when much of the country was following an eviction moratorium,” the Ap report said. “By December, eviction filings were nearly back to pre-pandemic levels.”

Rent prices have also steadily increased, being roughly 5% higher in 2023 over last year, and over 30% higher in 2023 when compared to 2019 according to data from Zillow as shared in the report.

As federal relief programs from the pandemic are increasingly expiring or becoming phased out, calls for additional resources from Congress have failed to gain any significant momentum, particularly as concerns over spending dominate the legislative agenda of the U.S. House of Representatives.

The expiration of eviction moratoria is also leading to higher rates of eviction. But similarly to a lack of will seen in the U.S. Congress, a number of state legislatures have not seen any meaningful legislation emerge to combat the trend, despite organized efforts in states like New York and Texas.

However, several pandemic housing relief measures have been made permanent.

Nationwide, 200 measures have passed since January 2021, including legal representation for tenants, sealing eviction records and mediation to resolve cases before they reach court, according to the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

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