REGION — Landlords are reporting vastly different results from the moratorium eviction put in place because of the coronavirus pandemic.

A nationwide ban on evictions had been put in place in September 2020 through the end of the year as part of an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently issued a new eviction moratorium lasting until Oct. 3. A federal judge dismissed a legal challenge to the order last month. The Supreme Court recently blocked the ban, so it’s no longer enforced.

In Farmington, Jon Bubier had seen a profound impact from the ban. He has approximately 60 rentals. Some renters aren’t trying to keep up with their payments, he said.

“Three or four refuse to ask for help, apply,” he said. “The day the moratorium stops is the day I start the eviction process,” he said.

Water, electricity, heat and mortgages have to be paid regardless of the rent being paid or not, Bubier said. One unit or 50 units, it’s no different, he noted.

“They agreed to rent, they don’t pay, the federal and state government says they don’t have to,” Bubier said. “If a tenant doesn’t apply for assistance we can’t apply. We’re left with nothing.”

The government just took ownership of all rental properties, he said. They’re telling us what we can or can’t do, he noted.

“It’s a very sad day for our state and country,” Bubier said. “Tenants are sitting on their steps all day long. They don’t want to work.”

Foothills Management, another Farmington rental business, has not been affected, manager Byron Staples said.

Information on the rent relief program through Western Maine Community Action is given to tenants, he said. He makes sure tenants who are behind on their rent know that’s there.

“I’ve done that since the beginning,” Staples said. “It’s probably made up the difference.”

Most renters are trying to keep up on their rent on their own and utilizing programs, he noted.

Increases in property insurance, oil costs and other expenses have been seen by Staples. He is holding off to some degree on renovations and business expansion.

Staples said he has seen a slight uptick in calls looking for housing. The CMP and solar projects are creating a short term demand that he doesn’t expect will become long standing.

In Livermore Falls, Pat Knowlton has had no issues.

“Everybody’s been paying,” she said recently. “I don’t know of any renters that have been affected. We were very fortunate. We have great tenants.”

Landlords do have to be paid, she noted.

Some area landlords did not return calls, others were too busy to talk or weren’t interested in discussing the matter.

With the Supreme Court’s latest ruling, landlords may now start the eviction process.

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