What you need to know about owning a rental property during COVID-19

It’s no surprise that emergency measures have been implemented across many industries due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including real estate. As a rental property owner, what should you know so you can keep yourself compliant? Here are 3 top things!

1. Rent – Some tenants may not be able to make their rent payments due to the economic impacts of COVID-19. If so, under current emergency mandates, you cannot issue a non payment notice (7 day pay or quit) or file an eviction, with exception. The current state eviction moratorium (expiring March 31, 2021) prevents evictions if the tenant meets one of the following requirements:

  1. The tenant expects to earn no more than $99,000 in annual income during 2020
  2. The tenant was not required to report any income in 2019 to the IRS
  3. The tenant received an Economic Impact Payment

A tenant is required to file an affidavit with the landlord stating that they meet one of the above criteria. A landlord may challenge their eligibility, at which point, a tenant may attempt to establish it. Late fees and penalties per the lease can still be assessed. The goal is to prevent disruption in the rental market and have mounting evictions.

Landlords cannot and should not change the locks or put notices on their tenants’ doors or mailboxes to scare them into moving out.

What can you do? You have two options: Forgive some or all of the rent, depending on your tenant’s circumstances. Forgiveness is not obligatory. Or you can defer some or all of the rent, making it due later on. A payment plan can be initiated to collect the deferred rent.  The key is communication by both tenant and landlord.

2. Home maintenance – Even though rent may be suspended, the home must still be maintained properly. Homeowners are required to address habitability and other maintenance related issues.

3. Non compliance of lease by tenant – If a tenant poses a danger to other tenants or the public, is engaging in criminal activity or is damaging the property, eviction proceedings may move forward.

It is highly important to keep up to date on new directives issued by the State of Nevada Governor’s office or extensions to previously issued ones.

Together, we can make this situation easier by working together. Nicklin is doing its part to minimize the impact for both tenants and homeowners and we will continue to keep our clients well informed of any new changes.  Be sure to visit our up to date COVID-19 response for any changes or updates along with helpful resources for rent payment and mortgage assistance.

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