• Blog
  • Fix for rent assistance: Have tenants pay rent to county, not landlords

Fix for rent assistance: Have tenants pay rent to county, not landlords

09/05/2023 5:00 PM | Dawn Anastasi (Administrator)

This article by David J. Decker proposes an interesting solution -- have tenants pay Rent Assistance to the Housing Authority, not to landlords. The Housing Authority can pay the landlord the rent in full.

Read the full article here

Excerpt from the article:

The existing assistance formula usually requires tenants to pay at least a small portion of their rent, for example, $100 per month. This is good policy, but it puts landlords in an awkward position. While the county can be trusted to make its payments, sometimes the tenant does not. The landlord is faced with a conundrum. Landlords can beg and cajole tenants and request payment, but the only tool with any consequences is eviction. However, is a landlord likely to file an eviction costing $150 or more to recover a $100 delinquency? Unlikely.

Instead, the delinquency may fester until the amount demands action. That amount could be $400 or more. While seemingly a relatively small sum, for the county aid recipient, this represents four months of rent. They are unlikely to be able to pay and will face eviction. Now everyone loses. The landlord is unlikely to ever recover these funds and the tenant is forced out of their home.

The remedy is obvious. Have the aid recipient pay their portion of the rent to the county and have the county pay the landlord in full. Now the county can decide when to be patient. The county will know more about what is going on with their clients and how well their recipient screening process is working.

What do you think of this idea? Post your comments below!

ATTRIBUTION: You are free to share this content, copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format for any purpose, even commercially, however you must give appropriate credit. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.

Rental Property Association of Wisconsin, Inc. (Formerly AASEW)
P.O. Box 4125
Milwaukee, WI 53204-7905
Phone: 414-276-7378

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software