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This website is being updated frequently. Please check back to see new updates. Last updated: April 3, 2020
Authorities wanting to provide updates to this page should send all notices to COVID19@mvfhc.com.
Please do not use this email address to request assistance. This email is solely for officials to provide updates to keep this page accurate. If you need assistance, please use the links below to complete a complaint form online or to contact Legal Aid Line.
Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
Last week Congress passed and President Trump signed a $2 trillion relief bill, but that money will not be available before many of us have to make rent and utility payments on April 1, 2020.
Much of the relief is also one-time payments and we all have recurring expenses. It is important that your housing stability is maintained during this pandemic. That is why we have created a template for an email or text you can send to your landlord now:
Sample Email/Text to Your Landlord
Hi landlord’s name, I hope you and yours are safe and healthy. I wanted to keep you updated about my situation. I have lost income/work/my job because of the COVID-19 crisis and cannot afford to pay my April rent at this time. Would you be willing to:
1. Waive April late fees?
2. Agree not to evict me for not being able to pay April rent on time, and instead agree that after the governor lifts the stay at home order, we will work out a repayment agreement that works for both of us?
The news is reporting that most mortgage holders can qualify for a forbearance because of COVID-19. If you receive a forbearance from your lender, would you also be willing to not charge me rent for those months?
Thanks for your flexibility and understanding,
Your phone number
Also below are some additional resources on what is in the relief bill to help you plan.
What’s in the CARES Act?
- Evictions for not paying rent and late fees are prohibited until July 25th for any landlord who has a federally backed mortgage or who receives government housing subsidies.
- Roughly 70% of all mortgages for 1–4 family homes are federally backed (by FHA, HUD, VA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or the Dept. of Agriculture).
For Homeowners and Landlords
- The CARES Act makes it possible for anyone with a federally backed mortgage, to request up to a six month forbearance with no penalties, with the option to extend another six months.
- Find out if you have a federally backed mortgage.
- Make sure to contact your mortgage servicer now, as all financial institutions are being encouraged to offer forbearance plans to their customers.
- For borrowers with mortgages who are unable to make their payments, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau offers guidance in their video “CARES Act Mortgage Forbearance: What You Need to Know.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, a landlord does not have the right to infringe on a tenant’s right to have guests unless local health authorities have issued specific orders that would prohibit guests.
A tenant’s right to have guests is found in their right to possess and control the premises—usually based in the lease—and under the legal concept of the covenant of quiet enjoyment. In Ohio, this right is implied in every rental lease agreement. The right of a tenant to have guests in her rental unit is violated when a landlord obstructs, interferes with, or takes away from the tenant, the ability to invite and have guests. The right to have guests includes the right to use the common area for travel to and from the rental unit. There is nothing in Ohio’s Stay at Home order that gives a landlord the power to infringe on the right of a tenant to have guests.
If you can pay your rent, you should continue to do so. Your landlord may still be able to evict you for unpaid rent once this crisis is over.
If you cannot pay your rent, or cannot pay the full amount of your rent, you should communicate with your landlord in writing (preferably email) and explain your situation. Offer to pay whatever you can, and ask them to work with you. For a sample email or text, see the CARES Act section above.
Unfortunately, there are no funds available for rental assistance that we know about.
To determine whether you are eligible for unemployment and to apply for benefits, go to unemployment.ohio.gov.
For Subsidized Housing Tenants
To make it easier for tenants of subsidized housing to request a rent recalculation because they have had a change in income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, our friends at the Connecticut Fair Housing Center created a form that allows tenants to put in the information about their decrease in income, address, etc.
Once the form is completed, the program automatically generates an email to the tenant’s housing authority as well as to the tenant.
There is also an option to have the letter emailed to the tenant only so that the tenant can decide where to send the letter.
Generate a letter by going to ctfairhousing.org/rent.
If you are facing eviction or are being threatened with being evicted:
You cannot be moved out of your home without a court order.
Most eviction proceedings have been suspended in area courts (see list below).
Your landlord cannot evict you, kick you out, or ask you to leave your apartment for having COVID-19.
Your landlord cannot evict you, kick you out, or ask you to leave your apartment for being under home quarantine.
Being under isolation or quarantine in a hospital or other facility does not change your tenancy — your apartment remains your primary residence.
You will still need to pay rent during quarantine or any time in a medical facility, just as is the case for any illness.
Your landlord cannot discriminate against you, kick you out, or ask you to leave your apartment because of fears and stigma around COVID-19, including discrimination or harassment on the basis of actual or perceived race, national origin, disability, or other protected classes.
If you are facing discrimination and harassment by your landlord, please file a complaint online:
• If you live in the City of Dayton, fill out the form on the City of Dayton Human Relations Council website.
• If you live outside the City of Dayton, fill out the form on the Miami Valley Fair Housing Center website.
If you are being evicted, you can contact ABLE and LAWO for assistance by completing an application online at legalaidline.org or by calling Legal Aid Line at 888-534-1432.
Statements on evictions from Miami Valley area courts
Dayton Municipal Court: All evictions on a temporary hold until April 30, 2020 (effective 3/13/2020).
Fairborn Municipal Court: All evictions, civil hearings, and small claims hearings have been continued and will be rescheduled “in the future as circumstances dictate” (effective 3/18/2020).
Kettering Municipal Court: All civil hearings, evictions and small claims hearings will be postponed for eight weeks, with new filings scheduled for hearings sometime after May 8, unless specified by the Court (effective 3/17/2020).
Miamisburg Municipal Court: Most civil hearings, eviction, and small claims trials will be postponed until after April 20, 2020, except under special circumstances, hearings will be held (effective 03/20/2020).
Oakwood Municipal Court: Evictions are continued until after April 30, 2020 (effective 3/17/2020).
Vandalia Municipal Court: All civil hearings, evicitons, small claims, and mediation hearings are postponed and will commence on May 11, 2020.
Xenia Municipal Court: All civil cases, including evictions, are continued until after May 8, 2020.
Montgomery County Municipal Court (covers the cities of Riverside, Huber Heights, Trotwood, and Brookville; Clay, Jackson, Jefferson and Perry townships; and the villages of New Lebanon, Phillipsburg, Farmersville, and Verona): Both the Western Division in New Lebanon (195 S. Clayton Road) and the Eastern Division in Huber Heights (6111 Taylorsville Road) will be extending the closure of the courthouse to the public through Friday, May 1, 2020. The court will re-open to the public on Monday, May 4, 2020, unless circumstances change and they can do so sooner (effective 3/31/2020).
Information from the Federal Government
The federal government is also sharing information and resources from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at the following links:
- Protect yourself financially from the impact of the coronavirus
- The CFPB continues to help consumers make informed financial decisions with up-to-date information and resources
- Protecting your credit during the coronavirus pandemic
- Coronavirus and dealing with debt: Tips to help ease the impact
- Tips for financial caregivers during the coronavirus pandemic