It is a sad fact that across the nation, communities of color continue to suffer disproportionately from high rates of both foreclosures and evictions due to foreclosure.
Studies have shown that approximately 40% of families affected by foreclosure, rent their homes and are often evicted when the landlords go into foreclosure, even when they pay their rent on time, every month. To help these families, and to address the problem of innocent families being evicted through no fault of their own, with as little as a few days’ notice, Congress in 2009 passed the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act (PTFA). Thanks to PTFA, families are now allowed to stay in their homes for the remainder of their lease or for at least 90 days, whichever is longer. Unfortunately, unless Congress takes action, these vital protections for millions of American families will expire on December 31, 2014.
To address this impending problem, Congressman Keith Ellison (MN) and Senator Richard Blumenthal (CT) have introduced H.R. 3543 / S. 1761, the Permanently Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act. Quite simply, H.R. 3543 / S. 1761 would make the protections of the PTFA permanent. If passed, this legislation would ensure that renters continue to have a basic level of federal protection regardless of the date of foreclosure.
This legislation is especially important given the continuing, unacceptably high, number of foreclosures in the United States. In April, 2014, just under 120,000 homes were in some state of foreclosure: nationwide, this is equal to 1 in every 1137.