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Landlords are suffering under pandemic downturn, too | READER COMMENTARY

Marilyn Hoffman at her rented home in Sanford, N.C., on Friday, Sept. 11, 2020. Hoffman lost her job as an aide at a group home for mentally disabled adults and is now facing eviction.
Marilyn Hoffman at her rented home in Sanford, N.C., on Friday, Sept. 11, 2020. Hoffman lost her job as an aide at a group home for mentally disabled adults and is now facing eviction. (Kate Medley/The New York Times)

I’m a landlord with one rental property located in Baltimore County. It seems as though all the COVID-19 relief is in favor of the tenants. No one is taking into consideration the loss that small landlords like myself are experiencing (“Utilities can send shutoff notices to Maryland homes starting this week. But help is available,” Sept. 28).

The current coronavirus policy for tenants is allowing them to take advantage of me and the taxpayers. They are collecting government assistance and not paying me. They can do this because they know none of the laws are being enforced. I have had problems with my tenants not paying their rent, which started back in September of 2019. They have never paid me one month without court judgment. The first failure to pay was filed back in October 2019. I’m now waiting for a court date for the fourth failure to pay rent which was filed back on Feb. 10, 2020.

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My tenants currently owe me $10,500 and only have paid me through January of 2020. This clearly was an issue before the pandemic. And now their lease is up, and I still can’t get them out.

I’m asking the government to look at both sides not just the tenants. I cannot afford to let them live in my property any longer. I have a mortgage to pay. None of the rent money is profit to me. I feel if the government doesn’t want to put these people out then why don’t they pay the rent? Why is it my responsibility to take care of them? And at my expense! Your policy may work for those who have always paid their rent prior to COVID-19 and truly are having hardships, but this isn’t my case.

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I believe there are a lot of landlords out there who are being treated unfairly like myself. I’m just asking for someone to be our voice! We landlords deserve some rights, too! I’m afraid of what will happen at the next court hearing. Will I ever have the right to make them leave?

Jennifer Bollino, White Marsh

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