Stop the reporting of Evictions due to Covid-19 to credit & rental screening companies!

Stop the reporting of Evictions due to Covid-19 to credit & rental screening companies!

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Lauren Calbreath started this petition to Oklahoma State Senate and

Finding a place to rent is hard enough with ridiculously high rental rates, over populated areas, crime rates and so forth. Then add in the credit rating factor and income guidelines. I have never understood why places want 3 times the rental rate in income to even be considered. If everybody that needed to rent made that much money,, I think they would buy a home and skip the rental race. Income guidelines, credit ratings and let's not forget that eviction on your record from a decade ago when you went through a tough time.... Oh wait! That wasnt a decade ago... That's happening right now! 

Is this the new normal? Worrying about where you will be living? Maybe you saved some stimulus money to pay for a hotel for a couple weeks? Then what? Maybe go stay with relatives? How is that possible when they were just evicted due to Covid-19 as well?  Maybe another stimulus check will come in time to pay for a few more weeks at a hotel but that's not guaranteed yet. Or how about renting another place once that next check does come in? 

Nope, sorry! Cant do that either. Why? Because you now have an eviction on your record due to Covid-19. If your background is run, you can kiss the app and admin fees goodbye and say hello to a denial letter...

Congress cant seem to decide what they are doing so in the meantime are we doomed because the Republicans and Democrats cant play nice with eachother? The moretorium may be over but the housing crisis is just beginning. People are getting evicted left and right and yet nothing in the news relating to any type of security that will protect all the Covid-19 evictees. This is a serious problem. There needs to be protection for people, a safeguard that keeps people from having  their credit and rental history destroyed with the reporting of an eviction due to Covid-19.

Everytime an application is submitted to any apartment complex or rental agency the fees immediately begin. A family of 4 with 2 adults, one adult child and one minor child spends on average $120 just to apply for an apartment or home. Now add on the administration fees in an amount between $150-$300. That family is now out of pocket between $270-$420. If they are approved then great. However we all know that with an eviction, that is not going to happen. So what do we do?  We still apply with our fingers crossed because we still need a place to live. The $120 in application fees is used for screening tenants and the remainder is applied to hold apartment till move in or it is applied as your deposit,,,, IF you are not denied.. Remember, that family now has an eviction due to Covid-19. That family just handed over their last bit of money and guess what?  Denied. Most think that all of that money is refundable but it is not. The application fees are never refunded and the administration fees that the family paid in cash,  it will not be given back immediately or even debited back to a card they may have used. Instead they have to wait for a check in the mail being sent by some "corporate" to an address they are no longer living at anymore. Now repeat the process again, trying to find a place to live while getting denied over and over, spending hundreds of dollars each time, then waiting a month to get back the last little bit of money so you can rent a motel for another night...... You can see how it starts to add up and as you can imagine, it starts to take its toll. How do I know this? Because I am living this scenario right now. 

There needs to be a law that prevents evictions from being reported to credit bureaus and rental verification companies if the eviction was filed during the moretorium or if the eviction is the result of Covid-19. If nothing is done, the homeless population is going to sky rocket. The apartment complex industry along with the private rental sector will fall rapidly.

The Citizens of Oklahoma DESERVE the protection from being cast out of their homes and into the streets. The Citizens of Oklahoma are the ones that keep the State running by purchasing goods, paying bills and creating the States economic demands. The Citizens of Oklahoma are the ones who put money back into the States economy, back into hard workers pockets, to spend on the economy again and again. The Citizens of Oklahoma are your Doctors, your Nurses, your Paramedics, your Firefighters, your Police Officers, your Soldiers, your Teachers, your Preachers, your Postal Workers, your Checkers, your Mechanics, your Athletes, your Musicians, your Baristas, your Dry cleaners, your Drivers, I could go on and on. Every citizen of Oklahoma has the Human Right to Housing and it is being taken away from us do to no fault of our own.  If the Citizens of this State cant rent, they cant sleep. If they cant sleep, they cant work. If they cant work, they cant make money. If they cant make money then they cant spend. And finally if they cant spend, what happens to the economy? It plummets..

The State of Oklahoma, my State, has one of the highest eviction rates, even pre Covid-19. Evictions have been filed during the moratorium through "emergency filing" loopholes and the courts have allowed it. People that are unfamiliar to the law or those who do not have access to research the laws are bailing out of their homes because a 5 day notice to quit was tacked to their door. Families being locked out and kept from their possessions because they do not have the resources to discover that they have tenant rights. The companies that filed during the moritorium broke the law and yet they sleep soundly at night. 

So what can we do to help families and prevent them from becoming a statistic? It is simple. Make it a law so that landlords, rental agencies, real estate agencies or any entity of that nature can not report an eviction to any of the credit bureaus or rental screening companies IF THE EVICTION WAS FILED DURING THE MORETORIUM OR IF EVICTION IS A RESULT OF THE PANDEMIC! That alone will prevent a flood of application denials and also prevent people from loosing their money to these corporations just to be denied. 

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