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COVID-19

Austin-Travis County Extend Ban On Most Evictions Through May 1

An eviction notice is posted on a home in Southwest Austin in 2018.
Gabriel C. Pérez
/
KUT
Austin area officials have extended a ban on evictions that has been in place during the pandemic.

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Most residential tenants in Austin — and some commercial ones — won’t be subject to an eviction for at least another month.

On Tuesday, Austin and Travis County officials extended a ban on evictions that has been in place for much of the pandemic to May 1, citing the continued spread of COVID-19 as one reason to make sure people have stable housing. The order currently in place was set to expire Thursday.

Landlords are prohibited from posting a "notice to vacate" on a renter’s door, which is typically the first step in a legal eviction.

“These eviction protections help keep thousands of people in our community housed and save lives,” Travis County Judge Andy Brown wrote in a statement. “We must keep these eviction protections in place to protect the health and safety of our community while we work to rapidly vaccinate all of Travis County. At the same time, we are working hard to expand access to rental assistance to mitigate the financial burden COVID-19 has placed on renters and landlords.”

Tenants can apply for rent assistance from the city, county or state. The City of Austin has a total of $25 million in federal funds available for people who need help paying rent.

Not all renters are covered by the local eviction bans. The bans apply to residential tenants who pay no more than $2,475 a month in rent and only in cases where a landlord wants to evict a tenant over unpaid rent. Landlords can still evict renters for other reasons, such as if they feel the tenants pose a threat of physical harm.

The order also covers commercial renters running businesses most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including child care centers, live music and art venues, bars and restaurants.

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