A Sample Letter To Your Landlord:

The coronavirus global pandemic has struck, and that means many of us are not getting paid. Specifically, a lot of people who aren’t getting paid right now are some of the people who can least afford to go without a paycheck.

If you were renting a property prior to the pandemic strike, chances are you didn’t have mountains of money sitting around to make a down payment on a property. So you needed those paychecks in order to pay the rent. That’s something everyone can understand, whether they are a garbage collector, a Beltway lawyer, a landlord or tenant, or a doctor, or anyone else.

But there’s a lot of confusion now about how people are going to pay rent. Government officials have said that landlords can’t evict people during coronavirus closures. However, they have not said that landlords can’t demand back rent later. So everything is really up in the air.

With that in mind, people have been asking us what they should say to their landlord. We’ve put together this effective script that will present your case to your landlord in a compelling way. You can send it as a letter or an email, or read it over the phone. However you like.

Letter to A Landlord:

“We all know that this is a troubling time for everyone. We understand that everyone has to make money, and everyone needs a home.

Due to pandemic closures, our family’s income has been dramatically decreased. We are not able to budget the way that we could in the months prior to March. That affects all sorts of contracts, including a rental agreement.

Landlords should know that for most of us working people, unemployment benefits are pending. That means we may have significant money to pay rent in the months to come, but do not have cash on hand for either March or April, and maybe even May.

In keeping with official estimates from economists of what portion of a household’s earned income should be spent on housing, we are able to pledge ______ percent of our eventual unemployment and other benefits directly to housing. (Traditionally 30% of ones gross earnings is applied to the costs of living. Like rent, insurance, and utilities.) That means we will commit to sending you this percentage of all unemployment benefits, stimulus checks and other emergency income that we receive, if and only if we receive commensurate relief from additional back rent above those amounts.

We remind you as a landlord that you have an important role in keeping people safe during this pandemic. That’s why the government has stipulated that tenants cannot be evicted during this time.

We wish to continue an open dialogue with you to come to a resolution that will in help us to get back to normal as we hopefully triumph over the coronavirus together.”

The above script can be really useful in communicating with your landlord to make sure that everyone’s on the same page and that COVID19 doesn’t end up jeopardizing your rental agreement months from now. Or worse case scenario with you and your family becoming homeless, via an eviction.

If you are feeling stressed, down, depressed, or just need a listening ear. Please visit THE ADVOCATE. A Program of our parent organization that offers FREE Advocacy. Check it out – it might help. Do NOT loose Hope – We care, and so do alot of other people.