Evictions Growing in Texas

The number of evictions in Texas is rising above pre-pandemic levels as renter protections expire.

May 11, 2022, 8:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Person holding sign that says "Evictions are violence"

Ryanzo W. Perez / Anti-eviction protest

As pandemic-era eviction protections lapse and rental assistance funding dries up or programs expire, renters in Texas face rising eviction rates, reports Cheryl Mercedes for KHOU. “Dallas, San Antonio and Houston are experiencing an increase in filings from landlords looking to force out renters.”

Eviction filings in the state dropped significantly during the moratorium imposed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2020, writes Mercedes, “But months after it was lifted (August 26, 2021), eviction filings picked up to more than 6,800 cases, surpassing the number of cases filed before the pandemic.” While a predicted national ‘eviction tsunami’ did not materialize in the way many feared, the consequences of disruptions in rent payments during the COVID-19 pandemic continue to reverberate. 

Eric Kwartler, founder of the Eviction Defense Coalition, a volunteer attorney group, says “The attorneys believe the solution lies with the state legislature.” According to Kwartler, “More protections for tenants ... more rent relief. The number one way to fight nonpayment of rent eviction is dependent rent. So, more money, more rent relief.”

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