In fewer than 30 days, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) national eviction moratorium will expire. The Federal Housing Finance Agency has already extended the moratorium on federally backed mortgages in single family homes through January 2021, but this one covers only a small share of renters living in single-family homes with federally backed mortgages. Although rental relief is the only real way to ensure recovery for all, strengthening the national eviction moratorium will be critical to keeping families safe from the coronavirus while Congress hammers out the details of a federal stimulus package.

An extension would provide much-needed continuity and protections during the transition of the executive branch. If President Trump and Congress do not extend the moratorium before the year ends, it will need to be a top priority for the new administration on their first day in office if they want to keep families housed and safe.

In September, the CDC recognized the threat that evictions pose to families’ health and took a critical step by passing a federal eviction moratorium for tenants facing financial hardship. But conditions have only worsened since then. Last month, a third of Americans said they would likely face foreclosure or eviction in the next few months. And because of long-standing systemic barriers that have been exacerbated by the pandemic, the financial impacts have been even worse for people of color.

With expanded unemployment and other supports expiring at the end of the year and unemployment numbers on the rise again, families will experience increased financial insecurity that will push them closer to the edge of housing insecurity. Even if Congress passes a federal deal with rental assistance, renters with rental debt will still be at risk for eviction for months as relief is distributed.

Read the full article about extending the eviction moratorium by Mary K. Cunningham and Abby Boshart at Urban Institute.