So, the evictions moratorium expired Saturday at midnight.

Over a quarter of renters are behind in some states, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities think-tank.

Southern states are some of the worst affected, though some 16 percent of US households owed rent — about double the amount before the pandemic.

This wasn’t necessary, but the choice was made to not pay people to stay in place, and the money given for relief has mostly not been administered, presumably because the bureaucratic hoops are ridiculous.

only $3 billion in aid has reached households out of the $25 billion allotted to states and localities in early February.

Rental properties and single homes are being snapped up en-masse by private equity and other big investors. Eviction is in their interest, as it makes it easier to raise rent.

This is a watershed moment for real-estate in America: this is where it moves to being owned more by smaller landlords and individual owners (for homes) to just another corporate owned means of, well, rent extraction.

Remember that after 2008 banks deliberately held houses off the market to drive up prices, and you’ll understand what is going to happen to rent, which has already seen ridiculous rises. With large amounts of rental property now in a very few hands, it will be easy for a few people to decide to hold just enough properties off the market to drive up rents. It’s better for big institutional owners to have higher rent prices and some empty if that works out to more rent, and given shortages already exist, I’m betting that will be the case.

The era of cheap housing has been over for a while, but it’s going to be thrown in a coffin and staked thru the heart if big investors have their way.

We’ll talk more later this week, probably, about how wonderful and useful the homeless are and why they are treated so badly.

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