Nov 2, 2021 - News

Dallas evictions are rising but remain below pre-pandemic levels

Three rows of identical houses on a blue background, with one of the houses replaced with a lock.

Maura Losch/Axios

Eviction filings have been rising in North Texas after the end of pandemic-related moratoriums, but remain below pre-pandemic levels.

Why it matters: Rent checks are due this week, and more than 500,000 Texans behind on rent reported they are somewhat to very likely to leave their homes within the next two months due to eviction, according to U.S. Census data.

By the numbers: In October, 2,697 evictions were filed in Dallas County, up from 1,813 in March, according to data compiled by the Child Poverty Action Lab.

  • Before the pandemic, Dallas County saw an average of 3,500 eviction filings a month.
  • In July, there were 3,967 eviction filings in the four major North Texas counties, according to data compiled by the North Texas Eviction Project.

Context: The Texas Rent Relief Program, which uses federal funds, can assist with unpaid or upcoming rent and utilities dating back to March 13, 2020.

  • The program has assisted 199,309 households statewide and paid more than $1.1 billion in assistance.
  • There's no law requiring Texas landlords to accept program assisted-payments, so that money doesn't always help stave off evictions.

The intrigue: Texas Republicans have proposed using federal COVID-19 aid to send $525 stimulus checks to homeowners.

  • Renters — which make up 38% of Texas households — would not receive the stimulus payments.

What they're saying: "Tenants have always been sitting ducks for the abuses of the Texas rental housing industry, but it has just gotten so much scarier between the pandemic and the skyrocketing homeownership costs," Texas Tenants Union executive director Sandy Rollins told Axios. "It just puts that much more pressure on tenants."


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