DC Council Passes COVID-19 Relief Bill

On April 7, 2020, the DC City Council passed emergency legislation that affects the ownership and operation of rental properties.

  • DC placed a moratorium on rent increases in market-rate and rent-controlled units during the public health emergency through 30 days after it ends.
  • Local mortgage companies are required to offer owners a 90-day deferral on payments if they can demonstrate financial hardship because of COVID-19, but this requirement does not apply to mortgage companies that are not regulated by the city such as national banks, e.g., Wells Fargo, Bank of America, etc.
  • Property owners that receive deferrals have to pass on savings to residents and tenants of apartments and commercial space.
  • Residents who provided or provide notice to vacate can stay in their units until the emergency is over.
  • The legislation bans debt collection lawsuits from the day they are filed to 60 days after the end of the current state of emergency. 
  • Cable, telephone and Internet cuts are banned until the emergency is over.
  • The Mayor is now authorized to extend the public health emergency to mid-June if necessary
  • Evictions and utility shut-offs were already banned by previous legislation.

For more details on how this new bill is likely to affect your operations and successful practices to respond, participate in the Families First Act, CARES Act and Other Relief for Property Managers and Associates webinar, sponsored by PMA and Offit Kurman, Friday, April 10, 2020.