Coronavirus Pandemic

Loopholes in CDC's Eviction Moratorium Leave Some Mobile Home Dwellers Homeless

"I feel like we're losing it all," said one owner

Demonstrators display signs calling for an end to evictions and foreclosures during a rally at Boston Housing Court outside the Edward W. Brooke Courthouse in Boston on Oct. 29, 2020.
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Affordable housing advocates have celebrated the Biden administration's extension of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's moratorium on evictions as a critical move that could help people fight to stay in their homes as the pandemic continues to gut the economy.

But the order includes loopholes that financially stretched landlords have been able to use to remove tenants who fall behind on rent. Housing advocates say one of the hardest-hit groups has been mobile home park dwellers, who were already surviving with a limited safety net to fall back on.

"In many cases, the tenant has 30 days to leave the lot. But how do you expect someone to pay a tow company $5,000 to $10,000 to detach their home from the property and reinstall it somewhere else?" said Stuart Campbell, a staff lawyer at Legal Aid of Northwest Texas, who has been working on a steady stream of mobile home eviction cases through the pandemic. "Oftentimes when they are evicted for lot rent, they're forfeiting the equity on the home. You could lose your home for $1."

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