The CDC and Trump administration have just issued a temporary eviction moratorium nationwide due to coronavirus, until the end of 2020. Any landlords breaching this eviction ban could face fines of up to $250,000. BUT what does this actually mean for tenants and landlords? Is this just an opportunity for tenants not to pay their rent? Well, first off, the eviction moratorium is temporary and only applies to tenants who have experienced a loss of income directly or indirectly due to the coronavirus. To qualify, tenants must sign a form and testify before a judge that they lost income due to Covid. Additionally they must prove that they expect to earn no more than $99,000 this year (individual) or $198,000 (as a couple). Tenants also have to show that they attempted to pay the landlord as much as they can afford and tried to obtain all government rental assistance available and if they were to be displaced it would leave them homeless or forced into a shared living situation. That's a big burden of proof. Furthermore, even if they do fulfill all the above criteria, they are not relieved from their obligations to their landlord. The rent they owe is merely postponed. Landlords may also be permitted to pile on penalties, fees and interest with each passing month. So, what are the key takeaways here? Tenants, if you've been hit by the crisis then this moratorium will help you. But, please do not mistake this as a free pass. Please try to do the best you can with rent owed, even if it's not the full sum. And landlords, have a heart. These are tough times for everyone so get creative. Explore win-win solutions.