Evictions on the Rise in California

As rent costs continue to grow and eviction protection programs lapse, eviction rates are spiking across the state.

1 minute read

November 20, 2023, 12:00 PM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Eviction notice taped to dark grey door with arched window at top.

CLShebley / Adobe Stock

A predicted wave of evictions is starting to sweep California as pandemic-era assistance programs and eviction moratoriums expire, reports Jeanne Kuang in CALmatters.

“The elevated numbers — in some places beyond pre-pandemic levels — show a significant portion of renters remain at risk of losing their homes, despite the state’s rollout of a $5 billion rent relief program during the pandemic and a yearslong pause on many eviction cases that many landlords have said disrupted their businesses and income.”

According to Kuang, “Recently obtained data from when the statewide moratorium was lifted through the summer of 2023 show that in a dozen of the state’s most populous counties the average monthly eviction filings surpassed pre-pandemic averages.” In some cities and counties that extended protections beyond the state program, the effect was delayed. “That’s led to particularly acute spikes this year in Alameda County and Los Angeles counties,” Kuang writes.

“The wave has swamped tenants’ attorneys, most of whom work for understaffed legal aid organizations that represent low-income residents. Few tenants have attorneys in eviction court, compared to landlords who are represented most of the time.”

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