The order lasts through Dec. 31 and applies to individual renters earning no more than $99,000 in annual income. The CDC said an eviction moratorium “can be an effective public health measure utilized to prevent the spread of communicable disease” like COVID-19.
Renters still owe rent and the order does not prevent the “charging or collecting of fees, penalties, or interest as a result of the failure to pay rent or other housing payment on a timely basis,” the CDC said.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told a U.S. House of Representatives panel earlier the measure was to ensure people “don’t get thrown out of their rental homes” as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Mnuchin said the actions affect about 40 million renters. He said Congress should still approve rental assistance.
In July, a firm estimated more than $21.5 billion in past-due rent is owed by Americans.
Over the spring and early summer, as unemployment surged to levels unseen since the aftermath of the 1930s Great Depression, a patchwork of federal, state and local eviction bans kept renters who could not make payments in homes.
The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives passed a bill in May that would extend enhanced jobless aid through January and allocated $100 billion for rental assistance. It would also have extended the federal ban on evictions for up to one year. The bill has not been approved in the Senate.