Giving Compass' Take:

• Researchers from The Aspen Institute break down the potential damage of the COVID-19-induced eviction crisis, highlighting the inequitable distribution of risk. 

• What role can you play in preventing an increase in homelessness, especially for marginalized communities? 

• Learn about four policy strategies to prevent evictions during the crisis

The United States may be facing the most severe housing crisis in its history. According to the latest analysis of weekly U.S. Census data, as federal, state and local protections and resources expire and in the absence of robust and swift intervention, an estimated 30–40 million people in America could be at risk of eviction in the next several months. Many property owners, who lack the credit or financial ability to cover rental payment arrears, will struggle to pay their mortgages and property taxes, and maintain properties. The COVID-19 housing crisis has sharply increased the risk of foreclosure and bankruptcy, especially among small property owners; long-term harm to renter families and individuals; disruption of the affordable housing market; and destabilization of communities across the United States.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, researchers, academics and advocates have conducted continuous analysis of the effect of the public health crisis and economic depression on renters and the housing market. Multiple studies have quantified the effect of COVID-19-related job loss and economic hardship on renters’ ability to pay rent during the pandemic. While methodologies differ, these analyses converge on a dire prediction: If conditions do not change, 29-43% of renter households could be at risk of eviction by the end of the year.

Communities of color are disproportionately rent-burdened and at risk of eviction. People of color are twice as likely to be renters and are disproportionately likely to be low-income and rental cost-burdened. Studies from cities throughout the country have shown that people of color, particularly Black and Latinx people, constitute approximately 80% of people facing eviction.

Read the full article about the looming COVID-19 eviction crisis at The Aspen Institute.