Evansville landlords concerned over non-payments

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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) – Indiana’s eviction moratorium ends July 31, and experts predict a wave of evictions are likely to take place by the beginning of August.

Some landlords in Evansville say the moratorium has been a nightmare, costing them money when they need it most. George and Casey Dunn say they were helping out by letting a friend live on their property when hard times hit during the pandemic.

“I let her stay with the terms of no lease,” said Casey. “It was just a verbal agreement between me and her and she was supposed to be out by the first of June, but of course with COVID that has all changed.”

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb’s order puts a stop to evictions until July 31. However, the Dunn’s say they’re now left with thousands of dollars in utility fees – and are out money their friend was supposed to pay in rent.

“We called the water department to see where the bill was going since it was not in my name anymore and they told me it was listed as vacant, unauthorized usage and as of now the bill is $2600 dollars in less than two months,” Casey said.

The Dunn’s have now hired an attorney but say nothing is getting done fast.

“For a small claims because we are not able to do the COVID eviction yet, (the current tenant) says ‘good luck with getting us out you don’t know how many people are here you don’t know their names’ and she is just horrible,” Casey said. “They are damaging the outside of my property, so I can only imagine what the inside of my property looks like.”

Indiana is offering $25 million worth of rental assistance starting Monday – but local landlords say they also need financial help.

“All the resources they give you they give them to renters and stuff like that but they are not giving resources to landlords,” George said. ” My lesson from this is not to be nice to people, I mean that’s what I’m getting, but that’s not how the world is supposed to be we’re supposed to love each other.”

Prosperity Indiana estimates more than 250,000 Hoosier renters will need emergency rent assistance by September 2021.

Now one Evansville family is left with bills to pay – and more questions than answers.

“I just would like them to leave my property, and not to have any more damage done to it,” Casey said.

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(This story was originally published on July 13, 2020) 

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