Gov. Cooper extends evictions moratorium for struggling renters

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Additional aid is on the way for many North Carolina renters who are struggling financially amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Gov. Roy Cooper announced Wednesday that he signed a bill that would extend an executive order that halts evictions for nonpayment of rent.

"Too many families are living on the edge, trying to do the right thing, but left with impossible choices. This Order will help them stay in their homes, which is essential to slowing the spread of the virus," Cooper said.

Wake County is also extending its efforts to help those who are behind on rent or facing evictions through the House Wake COVID-19 Eviction Program. The program -- which was set to expire Wednesday -- extended its application process to January 31.

READ MORE: 'The moratorium is going to end': North Carolinians await N.C. HOPE Program funds for rent, utilities
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"I don't know what I'm going to do. I don't know where I'm going to put my stuff," said one Fayetteville mom.

Cooper also noted that 21,000 renters have been notified that they will get help, adding up to $37 million through the HOPE Program which helps both renters and landlords who rely on that income stay afloat.

According to Cooper's office, states that would let their moratorium lapse saw a COVID-19 incidence rate that was 1.6 times higher than states that kept a moratorium in place.

The state estimates that 485,000 adults in rental housing reported that they are neither caught up on rent. Meanwhile, 3 million adults reported difficulty in covering household expenses, according to the Center on Budget and Policy priorities.
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