GAR and Alabama Association of REALTORS® File Lawsuit Over CDC’s Eviction Ban

On Friday, November 20, 2020, the Georgia Association of REALTORS® (GAR), along with the Alabama Association of REALTORS®, filed a lawsuit in federal court that challenges the constitutionality of the Center for Disease Control’s foreclosure and eviction ban.

“While this pandemic has taken a devastating toll on families across Georgia and on our state’s overall economy, it is important that we take steps to ensure this public health and economic crisis does not also become a nationwide housing crisis,” said Dorrie Love, 2021 GAR President.

The CDC’s ban is set to expire on December 31, 2020. The lawsuit highlights the fact that the burden for rent payments has shifted from the tenants to landlords, and that landlords across the nation stand to lose billions collectively if the ban is extended into 2021.

“More than half a million REALTORS® in America own at least one rental property, including thousands of Georgia REALTORS® ,” said Love. “And while GAR applauds every effort made to keep families in their homes, we believe any broad eviction prohibitions must come alongside rental assistance funding for Georgia’s housing providers, whose financial obligations and own livelihoods also remain at stake in light of the pandemic.”

Love stressed that rental assistance is a win for not only landlords and renters, but for the well-being of the housing market.

“Rental assistance will help families across our state avoid eviction while also ensuring property owners can continue to provide housing to Georgians in the months and years to come,” she said. “Working alongside the National Association of REALTORS® and other state and local REALTOR® groups, the Georgia Association of REALTORS® will continue to fight for a legitimate, sustainable solution on behalf of our members and all local housing providers.”

Ahead of the federal lawsuit, GAR sent a letter to Georgia Governor Brian Kemp on November 11, outlining the impending rental crises within the state. The letter urges Gov. Kemp to utilize funds from the $4.1 billion that Georgia received from the CARES Act in order to establish a statewide rental assistance program.