New Hampshire’s ban on evictions lifts on Wednesday, July 1, removing protections imposed early on in the COVID-19 emergency to prevent renters from losing their homes.
The ban did not require landlords to forgive rent, creating a backlog of unpaid rent which many still might not be able to pay.
Stephanie Bray of New Hampshire Legal Assistance says an eviction crisis could follow.
“To me every eviction is a crisis so there’s always an eviction crisis in the works but now it’s going to be magnified," Bray says. "We anticipate that we are going to see a tsunami of eviction cases. It’s going to affect many, many more people in the state.”
Gov. Chris Sununu recently set up a housing relief program to try to prevent such a crisis.
That program offers two types of financial support: renters can apply for one-time payments to help keep their housing, or they can apply for short-term rental assistance that can be used to either maintain or secure housing.
Applications will be available starting June 30, 2020, through local Community Action Program agencies.