Biden administration unveils renter protections – Orange County Register

By Anna Bahney | CNN

In response to rent payments soaring across the country in recent years, the Biden administration unveiled new actions Wednesday to protect tenants, make renting more affordable and improve fairness in the rental housing market.

Multiple agencies are expected to take part in improving conditions for renters, taking actions in tandem with a set of principles outlined by the administration focused on renters’ rights.

This blueprint informs further action by the federal government, state and local entities, as well as the private sector, in efforts to strengthen tenant protections and encourage rental affordability.

And it follows some of the most robust federal support for tenants in history, in which the government provided an unprecedented $46 billion in emergency rental funds to struggling tenants impacted by the pandemic.

The agencies involved include the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Justice.

More than a third of the American population — 44 million households — rent their homes. Before the pandemic, more than 2 million eviction fillings and roughly 900,000 evictions occurred annually, disproportionately affecting Black women and their children.

During the worst of the pandemic, the federal government’s moratorium on evictions and the historic outflow of rental relief kept at least a million at risk renters housed. But over the last year, rents have spiked and some of the largest corporate landlords have expanded their holdings and increased profits.

Renter-centered actions

The actions outlined on Wednesday target the practices of landlords, rental housing financing and ways to support renters who may be unfairly excluded from renting.

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