So, I don’t know if you’ve heard but there’s this thing going on right now called Covid19. It started out much like the first Friday the 13th movie – just a flash in the pan, a low-budget nothing. Sheltering in Place was supposed to be a two week long deal while they either got a handle on it or waited for it to pass, whatever. Friday the 13th had like twenty sequels, and we’re monnnnnnths into this Covid thing. I got to work from home for quite a while, which was good because right at that time I was really sick anyway – suddenly diabetic at the age of 53, but that’s a horror story for another time.
Down here in North Carolina it’s not as bad as it is in other states. We’re going about life more normally than in other places. Cleveland County is where we live and it’s a lot more rural and we don’t have as many cases. However…. we are feeling the effects of government decisions. I work in the property management field and we’re taking a huge hit. See, the CDC has somehow put a stranglehold on landlords. We manage almost 400 homes – mobile homes in communities the company owns. While there are a few tenants who’ve actually had hours cut or been laid off because of Covid, the majority of the people around here have been going to work as usual. However… because of a CDC mandate we can no longer evict anyone because they aren’t paying their rent. All someone has to do is sign an affidavit saying that they’ve been effected by Covid19 and our hands are tied until at least 2021. The affidavit states that they’ve been effected, that they’ve gone to government agencies for help paying their rent, that they’ll be homeless if evicted, and that they’ve made their own best efforts to pay but can’t. And we apparently can’t question any of this in eviction court – they don’t have to provide any proof of anything and the case is automatically dismissed. They are still responsible for paying the debt but we can’t evict at this time. You wouldn’t like to think that so many people would sign what’s considered a federal document and LIE, but here we are.
A few months ago they decided that if someone was behind in rent for the month of June we could not evict. They would have until the end of the year to pay for the month of June. Why just June? I have no idea. We still have tenants who were working the whole time, who chose to do other things with June’s rent who we’re going to have to take to court in 2021.
Fortunately, we can still evict based on reasons other than monetary. So, for example, we had tenants who were damaging the home, and going around the community knocking on doors at all times of the day and night asking for money, cigarettes, rides, etc. They’d cuss us out when we came in for monthly inspections. So we got to file on them. The cussin’ dude showed up for court and cried, which is pretty common. I see it all the time. I know the Judge sees it even more often. Neither of us buys the act anymore. And of course, we’re the big meanies, the bad guys. They moved out the other day and here’s a little of what we found…
See, if they’d just been behind in their rent because, hey, the government says they don’t HAVE to pay right now, we’d be stuck with these people. Where are people like this going to live when landlords lose their property to the banks because no one HAS to pay right now? And how long is “right now” going to last? Right now they’re saying the end of the year, but who knows how many times this will be extended? After all, it was supposed to be a two week thing, back in the early spring.